A ship that’s understood to be carrying a large number of Tesla Model Y electric SUVs has been ordered to head back to China as a plague of stink bugs has been found onboard.

    The Glovis Caravel, which is understood to have a capacity of 6500 vehicles, had been circling off the coast of Brisbane for weeks as the crew fumigated the cargo ship. It’s unclear how many Tesla Model Y vehicles are actually on the ship and whether there are any Model 3s also onboard.

    According to ship trackers, the Glovis Caravel is now bound for Shanghai and is estimated to arrive at the port at 11PM tonight.

    The Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry confirmed there were live Yellow Spotted Stink Bugs found onboard the Glovis Caravel, in addition to other biosecurity risks.

    “The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry has been working with a vehicle carrier to manage biosecurity risk posed by live insects detected on the vessel and its goods,” said a Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry spokesperson.

    “The vessel became subject to biosecurity control upon entry into Australian territory. The Department understands that the vessel has left Australian territory in order to manage the biosecurity risk associated with the goods.

    “There were multiple detections, including Yellow Spotted Stink Bug which poses significant threat to Australia’s plant health and environment because of the damage it can do to agricultural crops, fruit and ornamental trees.

    “The department’s primary concern is the management of biosecurity risk to protect Australia. The goods can be unloaded when biosecurity risks have been managed to an acceptable level.”

    In an email seen by CarExpert that was sent to prospective Tesla Model Y owners who had allocated cars on the Glovis Caravel, Tesla said the ship was “required to return to Shanghai for further processing prior to re-entering an Australian port”.

    “We are actively investigating all available options to get your Model Y to you as soon as possible,” it continued.

    “This may include reassigning your order to a vehicle from the next batch of production. Further details will be provided in the coming week.

    “Thank you again for your patience, we understand this has been a disappointing experience.

    “However, we want to reassure you that we are doing everything we can to minimise the impact to you.”

    According to posts on the Tesla Owners Australia Facebook group, Tesla is currently working through reassigning orders for people who have vehicles onboard the Glovis Caravel with a new vehicle that has a different VIN and is aboard a different ship.

    It’s unclear if this is what Tesla plans to do for all prospective Model Y owners that have allocated vehicles onboard the Glovis Caravel.

    It’s also unclear at this stage when the Glovis Caravel will be properly fumigated and be granted permission to travel back to Australia again.

    This isn’t the first time the Glovis Caravel has been the turned back from a port and its crew been forced to fumigate the ship.

    As reported by The New Zealand Herald in 2018, the Glovis Caravel was ordered to leave New Zealand after the new crew found around 600 stink bugs, with 12 of them still alive.

    Jack Quick

    Jack Quick is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne. Jack studied journalism and photography at Deakin University in Burwood, and previously represented the university in dance nationally. In his spare time, he loves to pump Charli XCX and play a bit of Grand Theft Auto. He’s also the proud owner of a blue, manual 2020 Suzuki Jimny.

    Buy and Lease
    Uncover exclusive deals and discounts with a VIP referral to Australia's best dealers
    Uncover exclusive deals and discounts with a VIP referral to Australia's best dealers
    Also on CarExpert