Consumer Reports pulls off recommendation for Tesla’s Model 3, citing reliability

Images of 2017 Tesla Model 3

Consumer Reports on Thursday yanked a recommendation for Tesla Inc’s Model 3, pointing out reliability issues, and the influential U.S. magazine turned up the pressure on other automakers to include crash-avoiding automatic braking as conventional equipment.

The magazine’s decision to withdraw its recommendation for the Tesla Model 3 less than nine months after endorsing the electric sedan highlighted speaks about quality that Tesla has faced since the vehicle’s difficult launch. Tesla shares dropped 3.4 percent to $292.19 in afternoon trading Thursday on the Nasdaq.

Low scores for the Model 3 damage the brand’s overall standing, knocking it down 11 spots to No. 19 out of 33 brands in Consumer Reports’ 2019 yearly rankings.

Millions of prospective auto buyers look at the magazine’s rankings, which are based on road testing, reliability, security and owner satisfaction scores.

Regardless of reliability problems, Model 3 owners stated they love their vehicles, said Jake Fisher, the magazine’s senior director of automotive testing.

“We have already made major improvements to correct any issues that Model 3 customers may have experienced that are referenced in this (Consumer Reports) report,” a Tesla spokesperson stated in an email according to Reuters, “and our return policy allows any customer who is unhappy with their car to return it for a full refund.”

Previously this month, Tesla CEO Elon Musk stated during a call with investors that the company is concentrating on improving customer service and quality.

Consumer Reports’ refusal to recommend vehicles that lack technology that automatically applies brakes disqualified a wide swath of well known brands and models, including General Motors’s Chevrolet.

A growing number of new vehicle models now come with automatic emergency braking, often called AEB, as standard, including Subaru’s Ascent, which is Consumer Reports’ 2019 top pick for the midsize SUV category.

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