Despite An Ongoing NHTSA Investigation, German Authorities Have Cleared Tesla From Any "Manufacturer-Related Defects"
German Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA) Clears Tesla In Letter (click to enlarge - translated below)
Exactly how or why the German Federal Motor Transport Authority, or Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt (KBA), got involved in the three recent Tesla Model S fires that happened in the United States (here and here) & Mexico (here) is beyond us...much less the fact that the KBA has put out a press release clearing Tesla of any "manufacturer-related defects."
Yet they did.
And because Tesla Motors has thought it was a good idea to officially highlight this action, we will simply pass it along without comment.
Actually we will comment.
It is hard to think that an agency (KBA) that is thousands of miles away, with no direct contact/involvement with any of these incidents, other than requesting that Tesla send them data directly themselves would pass judgement from far away while a NHTSA investigation is still underway seems ludicrous to us.
And that Tesla would choose to tout it, is almost as surprising, especially considering the recent "we requested the investigation" - "no you didn't" debate that has been going on very publically between the NHSTA and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
Don't get us wrong, we believe the Model S will ultimately be cleared by the NHTSA, and we think its great the Germans are A-OK with the Model S.
However in our opinion this German investigation has little credibility, and it does not serve Tesla well to mention it publically. For now, the NHTSA gets the final, and only say that really matters.
Tesla statement on the Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt inquiry:
PALO ALTO, Calif. – Tesla received a recent inquiry from the German Federal Motor Transport Authority, Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt (KBA), regarding the Model S post-crash fire incidents in Seattle, Tennessee and Mexico. The KBA is the German authority in charge of motor vehicle regulation. They have the power to initiate and perform investigations, and compel recalls. In response, Tesla provided the KBA with data and additional information regarding each of these incidents.
In investigating these incidents, the KBA reviewed Tesla’s responses to their inquiries, as well as other information. They subsequently issued the following statement:
According to the documents, no manufacturer-related defects could be found. Therefore, no further measures under the German Product Safety Act are deemed necessary.
Letter from the KBA (translated - original is above in thumbnail):
27 November 2013
GSK STOCKMANN + KOLLEGEN Rechtsanwälte Steuerberater Herrn Dr. Marcel Vietor Karl-Scharnagl-Ring 8 80539 München
Investigation under the German Product Safety Act , Tesla Model S vehicle fires
Dear Dr. Vietor,
Referring to our phone call dated 27 November 2013, I am pleased to share with you the investigation’s result with regard to the 3 recent fire incidents involving Tesla Model S cars.
According to the documents, no manufacturer-related defects could be found.
Therefore, no further measures under the German Product Safety Act are deemed necessary.
The process is completed with the Federal Motor Transport Authority .
Tesla official press release can be found here