VinFast, the Vietnamese electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer, hasn’t exactly had a stellar start to their rollout of new VF 8 EV here in America. The reviews of the new VinFast VF 8 weren’t highly praising of the new EV SUV, but many journalists gave them credit for at least attempting what many see as a difficult feat for creating an all-new vehicle. Unfortunately, VinFast has faced its first recall, prompted by a safety warning issued by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) concerning a software error in the dashboard display of VinFast’s VF 8 vehicles. This error prevents critical safety information from being shown and could potentially increase the risk of a crash.
According to the NHTSA, out of the 999 VF 8 vehicles affected, more than 700 units remain in VinFast’s possession and have not yet been delivered to customers or fleet services. VinFast has decided to take this precautionary step to ensure customer safety, despite not being aware of any reported incidents related to this issue.
VinFast’s decision to recall the VF 8 City Edition models comes shortly after the company’s announcement of its plans to list in the United States through a merger with special purpose acquisition company Black Spade Acquisition Co (BSAQ.N). The merger is expected to result in a new entity with a potential equity value of $23 billion, assuming shareholders do not opt to cash out.
This is not the first recall for VinFast. In February, the company recalled 2,781 VF 8 cars sold within Vietnam due to a front brake problem in certain models. VinFast, founded in 2017, began selling EVs in California this year and has shipped a total of 2,097 VF 8 cars to the United States in two batches. Additionally, the company has plans to expand its market to Europe with the first shipments scheduled for July.
VinFast became aware of the dashboard issue on April 27 after reviewing customer feedback. The NHTSA reports that this problem has been documented 18 times. To address the issue, VinFast will introduce a software update, scheduled to go live on May 25. Owners will receive notification letters regarding the update by May 29.
Despite this setback, VinFast recently secured $2.5 billion in funding from Vingroup JSC, its parent company and Vietnam’s largest conglomerate, as well as from Pham Nhat Vuong, the founder of VinFast and Vietnam’s first billionaire.
In summary, VinFast has initiated a recall of its first shipment of EVs to the United States following a safety warning from the NHTSA. The recall is due to a software error in the dashboard display that hinders the presentation of critical safety information. VinFast is taking this action as a precautionary measure, despite no reported incidents. The company plans to resolve the issue through a software update, while continuing its expansion into the U.S. and European markets.