After yet another viral controversy involving Teslas began circulating social media today, some users are saying Elon Musk may, to quote the famous meme, have "no good car ideas."
Over the past year, Tesla cars have been reported to drive into police vehicles and purportedly children, careen into oncoming traffic and get torn apart by dogs. The latest technical oopsie woopsie reported to be affecting Tesla drivers is that the steering wheel flies off.
This morning, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced that it had received two complaints from Tesla drivers purporting that their vehicles' steering wheels detached while they were operating the car. According to the announcement, the 2023 Model Y Teslas were missing the retaining bolt because it was never installed. The organization is going to investigate to “assess the scope, frequency, and manufacturing processes associated with the condition.”
As one may imagine, having the steering wheel detach from a car while the vehicle is in motion could be a very serious problem even with Full Self Driving, especially since Tesla cars have been known to simply ignore oncoming vehicles in certain situations.
Folks may also remember that "having a steering wheel that doesn't fly off" was the famous concern of Focus Group Man, a character in one of the best sketches from I Think You Should Leave.
In the sketch, a focus group is bandying around ideas for a new car, and the elderly gentleman proposes what was intended to be a humorous suggestion for a "steering wheel that doesn't WHIFF out the window while I'm driving."
The scene became a famous meme in 2019, and now that Tesla is reportedly shipping cars with steering wheels that could potentially WHIFF out the window while driving, many on Twitter took the news as an opportunity to revive the gag.
I just want a car with a good steering wheel that doesn’t fly off when you’re driving it https://t.co/iVkGWJRHvy pic.twitter.com/DvRQfsvI62
— 🤌🏼Super Nintendo Chalmers🤌🏼 (@snchalmers79) March 8, 2023
AP News reported that Tesla has not commented on the complaint because the company disbanded its media relations department.
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