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Tesla announces Cybertruck recall at the worst possible time for Elon Musk

Tesla is recalling thousands of its Cybertrucks due to a faulty accelerator pedal, just as its CEO is trying to reinstate a very generous pay package.

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Tesla, Elon Musk’s tech and car company, is recalling nearly 4,000 Cybertrucks after reports of a faulty accelerator pedal — and the news couldn’t have come at a worse time for Musk.?

Tesla decided to issue the recall for all trucks made between November of 2023 and April of 2024 after a viral video posted by a Cybertruck owner warned of issues with the accelerator pedal. Owner Jose Martinez said part of the pedal was sliding off and causing the car to “lurch forward at full throttle” on its own, in a scene I imagine played out like a horrifying "Knight Rider" remake.?

Following the news on Friday, Tesla’s stock dropped for the sixth consecutive day. And the recall came just days after Bloomberg’s billionaire index showed Musk had been supplanted on the list of the world’s richest people by his archrival, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

All of this just as Musk is trying to convince Tesla investors to vote to reapprove the gargantuan, $56 billion pay package. A judge voided the payout in January, finding it unfair to shareholders because the investors who approved it were too cozy with Musk to have acted independently. Frightening recalls and a descending stock price would hardly seem to warrant a $56 billion reward — much less at a company that’s ensnared in a racial discrimination class action lawsuit — but perhaps Tesla's investors feel differently.?

Not to mention that this Cybertruck recall adds to a seemingly ever-growing list of safety and security issues with Tesla vehicles. More than 2 million Teslas were recalled in February due to issues with a warning light. That followed a recall of similar size in December due to issues with Tesla’s "autopilot" software. Along with that, the Mozilla Foundation ranked Tesla poorly compared to other carmakers in its protection of user data — a troubling fact when you consider the massive amount of data Teslas can obtain about their users. And several former Tesla employees said that sensitive videos and images from customers’ car cameras were often shared internally in the company, according to a Reuters report from last year.?(Tesla did not respond to Axios regarding Mozilla's report or to Reuters regarding its employees sharing images from cars' cameras.)

Maybe the sound system is nice?

Ironically, Musk has been vocal this year in pushing the racist claim that airline companies that emphasize diversity, equity and inclusion make their passengers less safe. Meanwhile, his car company has had to make amends repeatedly for its own safety issues.

All things considered, given the choice between riding in a Tesla or walking to your destination, I'd recommend getting some insoles.

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