One of the less-obvious ways that Tesla has been shaking up the auto industry with its iconoclastic ideas has been its move towards over-the-air/wireless software updates as a way of dealing with some problems — rather than having to issue a recall anytime there’s a major software issue uncovered, the company can simply and quickly push out a patch wirelessly, as a tech company would.
With that in mind, news recently broke that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has issued a recall for more than 16,000 Fiat 500e electric vehicles (EVs) — model years 2013 through 2016 are affected — in order to deal with a software problem.
The software glitch in question can apparently cause the car’s control systems to shut off vehicle propulsion in some situations — potentially leading to crashes or accidents.
It’s important to note here, though, that no injuries or deaths relating to this problem have been reported — so it mostly appears that the company is simply being responsible and proactive about the problem.
FCA discovered the software glitch during a “routine component check,” reportedly, rather than from customer complaints.
It should be remembered here that the Fiat 500e is essentially just a compliance car, and is currently only sold in California and Oregon. The company seemingly has no interest to release the model in other markets. All 16,549 of the Fiat 500e electric cars built between March 22, 2012, and January 29, 2016, are affected by the recall.
More information on the recall can be found online here, or by phone through the FCA customer service number (1-800-853-1403).