2022 Tesla Model X Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Electrical system and steering issues, as well as problems with safety systems are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones | Reviewer: Sergei Lemberg

Driving an electric car is meant to be fun and exciting. That’s exactly what the 2022 Tesla Model X offers when it claims it is “Beyond Ludicrous.” However, the only crazy thing customers have found are multiple problems that relate to the electrical system, steering, and various safety systems. It’s no surprise that there are owners out there who find these problems beyond ludicrous!

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Most Common Problems

The most common problems reported to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) relate to forward collision avoidance, steering, the electrical system, and issues that are associated with forward collision avoidance. Many other safety-related problems are connected with vehicle speed control and lane departure problems.

Other components and problems mentioned in complaints include the airbags, backover prevention, fuel/propulsion system, powertrain, seat belts and seats, brakes, structure, suspension, wheels and tires, and visibility/wipers.

For the record, there were a total of 56 complaints listed with the NHTSA between March 11, 2022, and September 12, 2023.

Additionally, a total of 12 recalls were issued for the 2022 Tesla Model X between January 2022 and April 2022. While half of these relate to the electrical system, the other components and systems affected are airbags, backover prevention, equipment, forward collision avoidance, seat belts, seats, steering, structure, and visibility.

And that’s not all. This Tesla is also the subject of 5 investigations by the NHTSA Office of Defects Investigation (ODI). Of these, 2 relate to the electrical system, 1 to the seat belts, and 1 to vehicle speed control. The fifth is listed as being an “unknown or other” issue, but it relates to the brakes. It aims to “reduce the number of sudden unintended acceleration events.”

With all these issues, you’d imagine that there would be volumes of paperwork shared with manufacturers. But, there were only 7 manufacturer communications on file with the NHTSA by mid-September 2023.

2022 Tesla Model X Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Steering
26
26
Unknown Or Other
22
22
Forward Collision Avoidance: Adaptive Cruise Control
16
16
Vehicle Speed Control
10
10
Electrical System
9
9
Forward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking
6
6
Seat Belts
6
6
Service Brakes
6
6
Seats
4
4
Air Bags
3
3

Safety System Problems

When a large percentage of the problems reported to the NHTSA relate to safety systems, there is a reason for concern. Most relate to the forward collision-avoidance system. But there are also lots that highlight issues with vehicle speed control. It’s worth mentioning that one of the open investigations into the 2022 Tesla Model X is a vehicle speed control issue. Other safety-related complaints relate specifically to backover prevention and lane departure. They are all very varied.

Imagine the horror of a Texas owner who collided with two cars after the car “started accelerating suddenly and unintendedly without my foot being on the accelerator.” All he was trying to do was park at a convenience store. “My initial speed was probably 5 miles/hour, but it accelerated so suddenly that four airbags deployed, and the car is not drivable. Insurance company is evaluating whether the car is repairable, but I am afraid of driving with this car again until the problem is found and fixed. This could have turned to a major tragedy.”

A Connecticut owner was faced with phantom braking while in autopilot mode using navigation, which appeared to become confused. It “thinks it is on a side street. Vehicle goes from high speeds of 70-80 mph, down to 30-40 mph.” If there had been another vehicle close behind, it would have probably been a collision.

Another complaint from an owner in California tells how unintended acceleration caused “the vehicle to drive over a curb, into a ravine, and then crash into a tree.” The dealership couldn’t say what caused the issue.

Several other complaints talk about the Tesla applying brakes when cruise control is on. It appears to be an accident waiting to happen.” A search of Tesla forums shows this is a common problem with these vehicles.”

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Steering and Horn Problems

If the steering wheel of a vehicle doesn’t enable you to go where you want to go, you’ve got a huge problem. When the horn is part of the steering wheel design, this complicates the issue.

There are multiple complaints about the steering system of the 2022 Tesla Model X, many of which also relate to the horn. As an owner in California states, the “horn location is tiny, and moves as (the) wheel turns.” This makes it impossible to activate the horn quickly in emergencies.

An owner from Pennsylvania states that the “Steering wheel left and right signals are hard to control while driving.” This driver narrowly escaped an accident because of having to look at the steering wheel to press signal buttons.

An owner from California states that occasionally the button for the right and left turning signal on the steering wheel/yoke doesn’t work.”

Another complaint states that the horn button is in “a small touch area within the steering wheel that can be used with the thumb in the right location.” Because of this, they can’t “hit the horn.”

An owner from Illinois states that many times “I have attempted to signal other drivers using my horn in an emergency situation.” Because of this issue, the complaint states that “Tesla has prioritized design over safety, and it is only a matter of time before lives are lost through easily preventable collisions due to the lack of a standard warning device such as a horn.”

Electrical System Problems

As an electric vehicle, it would seem only right that the Tesla Model X would be well-equipped with the latest technologies. However, the Model X can be downright dangerous because of malfunctioning electronics.

One NHTSA review states, “While driving the electronic systems that monitor the brakes as well as traction control malfunction. It happened multiple times. At one point, the steering wheel was not operable. The brakes became inoperable. I had it towed to the Tesla service center where they said they corrected it. However, upon getting the car back it happened again. Car is very unsafe to drive when all systems shut down.”

Another, from an owner in California, lists multiple malfunctions:

  • Outdated feed from the backup camera and no signal from the side cameras.
  • False input from physical controls, and proximity and open door sensors.
  • Spontaneous activation of autonomous parking and the service mode.
  • Brake faults that were reproduced multiple times.
  • Steering assist fault.
  • High-voltage system fault.
  • Spontaneous computer restart.

These led to numerous safety concerns that were reported to Tesla. “The vehicle was inspected and the problem was confirmed by Tesla Service on 4/5/2022. They recommended installing a software update that didn’t resolve any of the reported issues.”

The complaint ends by stating that Tesla has issued a safety recall with NHTSA Recall No. 22V-296 and Manufacturer Recall No. SB-22-00-009. “The recall addresses the same issue as described in this complaint that occurs after preheating the battery before supercharging and after supercharging. The safety recall states that the issue increases the risk of a collision.”

What to do if your 2022 Tesla Model X is a lemon? Your Lemon Rights

Tesla is well aware of lemon law issues and acknowledges owners’ rights in a document on their website. It describes how to make a claim. But instead of tackling the system on your own, you can reach out to Lemberg Law and our lemon law team will help you negotiate a settlement.

We have helped many car owners get replacement vehicles and have negotiated buy-back agreements or cash settlements from manufacturers. Call our Helpline and we will evaluate your case. The law requires that Tesla pay legal costs for lemon law cases, so you’ve got nothing to lose.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones
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