Rivian’s new battery option comes with some less-than-exciting news. The EV brand is recalling 12,716 R1T pickups and R1S SUVs from the 2022 model year due to an airbag deployment problem. A supplier’s faulty seatbelt sensors can prevent the front passenger’s airbag from deploying properly. The car does not need to inform the passengers, ether.
The company told Engadget that safety is its “top priority,” and that the free repair should take no more than 30 minutes. In its report to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Rivian said it was not aware of any injuries stemming from the issue. The company estimates that a percentage of the vehicles covered by the recall may be affected, and that it stopped building the R1T and R1S models with the “suspect” sensor on September 15 last year.
The recall pales in comparison to rivals like Tesla, which (among other issues) has had to update more than 1 million cars due to pinching windows. However, Rivian has only produced 24,337 vehicles throughout 2022. Almost half of its annual output is subject to this announcement, in other words. as Electrek observes, it also comes months after a 13,000-unit recall over a potential steering control fault, and nearly a year after another airbag sensor glitch prompted a 502 -car recall.
This is unlikely to harm Rivian’s finances. However, the timing was not good. Rivian recently announced a second round of layoffs, and has already taken other steps to cut costs while dealing with a tough economy. The new automaker still needs to increase demand because it’s looking to make a profit, and a recall like this doesn’t help its cause.
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