Toyota Recalls Nearly 170,000 More Vehicles Due to Takata Airbag Issues

Laguna Hills, CA – December 31, 2018 – Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain 2002-2005 Lexus SC and Toyota Sequoia, 2003-2005 Toyota Corolla and Tundra, and 2003-2007 Pontiac Vibe vehicles due to airbag propellant degradation. The potential number of units affected is 169,481. This recall is connected to a larger recall driven by Takata, in advance of official DIRs from Takata but in accordance with preset plans.

The Defect

According to the NHTSA Recall Safety Report, these vehicles are equipped with certain air bag inflators assembled as part of the passenger frontal air bag modules used as original equipment or replacement equipment. In the event of a crash necessitating deployment of the passenger frontal air bag, these inflators may explode due to propellant degradation. An inflator explosion may result in sharp metal fragments striking the driver or other occupants resulting in serious injury or death.

Timeline of Events

On December 7, 2018, in consideration of a sufficient supply of final remedy inflators and upon discussion with the Agency, Toyota decided to conduct a campaign to replace the air bag inflator or the air bag assembly on certain Toyota and Lexus vehicles. Additionally, Toyota is also recalling certain Pontiac Vibe vehicles based on General Motors’ request, and in consideration of a sufficient supply of final remedy inflators by them.

Not all vehicles in the affected range were sold in the U.S. The subject vehicles are equipped with front passenger air bag inflators (Takata-designated SPI, PSPI or PSPI-L) which contain a non-desiccated phase stabilized ammonium nitrate propellant and that were replaced as a “like-for-like” inflator under a prior recall by Takata, although Takata’s official DIRs that affect the subject vehicles will not occur until late 2019. Toyota is accelerating the launch of the remedy for these vehicles in advance of the Takata decisions.

The Solution

Toyota will notify the Toyota and Lexus owners. General Motors will notify the Pontiac Vibe owners. Depending on the vehicle model, dealers will replace the front passenger air bag inflator with an alternate inflator or replace the air bag assembly that includes an alternate inflator, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin January 14, 2019.

Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371, Lexus customer service at 1-800-255-3987 or Pontiac customer service at 1-800-762-2737. Toyota’s numbers for these recalls are J0A (Zone A Toyota), J0B (Zone B Toyota), J0C (Zone C Toyota), JLI (Zone A Lexus), JLJ (Zone B Lexus), and JLK (Zone C Lexus).

This recall includes vehicles that have had their air bag previously replaced under an earlier air bag campaign. General Motors will notify NHTSA separately of its repair and notification schedule and its campaign number concerning the Pontiac Vibe, and will provide reimbursement to owners for repairs according to the plan submitted by GM on May 19, 2017.

Owners may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 18V-883.

Sean ReyesToyota Recalls Nearly 170,000 More Vehicles Due to Takata Airbag Issues

Toyota Recalls Nearly 17,000 Scion xA Vehicles Due to Air Bag Defect

Laguna Hills, CA – November 28, 2018 – Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain 2004-2006 Toyota Scion xA vehicles for a potential internal short in the air bag module. The potential number of units affected is 16,992.

The Defect

According to the NHTSA Recall Safety Report, the airbag control module for the supplemental restraint system (SRS ECU) in the subject vehicles may have been manufactured with application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs) which are susceptible to internal shorting when exposed to the naturally high inductive electrical noise from various vehicle electrical components close to the module. In some cases, the SRS warning light for the airbag(s) could illuminate, and the airbag(s) and/or seat belt pretensioner (s) could become deactivated. In other cases, these systems could inadvertently deploy in the absence of an impact. An airbag that is deactivated or is deployed inadvertently can increase the risk of injury or the possibility of a crash.

Timeline of Events

In 2013, Toyota recalled approximately 890,000 vehicles in the U.S. which were equipped with generation 5.0 TRW SRS ECUs. In these ECUs, damage due to electrical noise could result in an inadvertent deployment of the airbag(s) and/or seat belt pretensioners. At the time, generation 5.5 SRS ECUs (that are the subject of this recall) were not included.

In June 2013, Toyota received a field report from the European market indicating the inadvertent activation of the driver, front passenger, and knee airbags while driving a CY 2006 Corolla Verso vehicle. Airbags were found to be activated as per the customer’s allegation, but there was no evidence of an impact. The SRS ECU was recovered and investigated, and damage appeared to be similar to damage from electrical noise that could have occurred on a generation 5.0 SRS ECU, recalled in 2013; however, it was judged to be an isolated case due to the differences between the 5.0 and 5.5 models.

In July 2015, Toyota received information from a dealer in the Japan market indicating the inadvertent activation of the driver, front passenger, and knee airbags while driving a CY 2006 Avensis vehicle. Similar results were found. Toyota began replication testing and recovery of working SRS ECUs of this generation from in-use vehicles and found that the generation 5.5 SRS ECUs have higher insulation against electrical noise compared to the recalled generation 5.0 ECUs. However, Toyota continued to sporadically receive similar field reports from countries outside of North America, mainly from European countries and Japan, and continued its investigation.

Toyota reviewed the difference between the Avensis and other models, and once again started the recovery of working SRS ECUs from a larger population of in-use Avensis vehicles. In August 2017, Toyota also received the first field report from the U.S. market, claiming inadvertent activation of the driver and front passenger airbags in a 2006 MY Toyota Scion xA vehicle with a generation 5.5 SRS ECU. Toyota investigated the SRS ECU and confirmed the damage of the ASIC for transmitting the signal to deploy the airbags was similar to other cases from the European and Japan markets. At that time, Toyota observed that the insulation against electrical noise found in the ASICs in the generation 5.5 SRS ECUs had an unexpectedly wide variation in effectiveness and Toyota subsequently chose to conduct a voluntary safety recall campaign.

The Solution

All known owners of the subject vehicles will be notified by first class mail to return their vehicles to a Toyota dealer. The dealers will replace the airbag control module with an updated one, free of charge. The owner letter will also instruct vehicle owners who have paid to have this condition remedied prior to this campaign to seek reimbursement under Toyota’s General Reimbursement Plan. The recall is expected to begin December 24, 2018. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371. Toyota’s number for this recall is J0W. Owners may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 18V-776.

Sean ReyesToyota Recalls Nearly 17,000 Scion xA Vehicles Due to Air Bag Defect

2017-2019 Toyota 4Runner: Recall Alert

2017-2019 Toyota 4Runner: Recall Alert

Sean Reyes2017-2019 Toyota 4Runner: Recall Alert

Toyota Recalls Nearly 1300 4Runners for Insufficient Cargo Load Capacity

Laguna Hills, CA – November 2, 2018 – Southeast Toyota Distributors, LLC (SET) is recalling certain 2017-2019 Toyota 4Runner vehicles that SET modified to be equipped with a TRD wheel package on which a certification label was incorrect. This recall is expected to affect 1295 vehicles in North America.

The Defect

According to the NHTSA Recall Safety Report, the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) on the certification label may be incorrect, possibly resulting in the vehicle being overloaded. An overloaded vehicle can increase the risk of a crash.

Timeline of Events

During a routine data validation audit on in late September 2018, it was discovered that the accessory weight for the TRD Wheel Package was not accurately relayed to the software used to calculate the load carrying capacity modification labels. The TRD Wheel Package is installed by SET at the request of Toyota and is considered standard equipment on the special edition TRD 4Runner from Toyota. However, the TRD Wheel package weight was not included in the final vehicle certification, and should have been included in the load carrying capacity modification label calculation. This led to affected vehicles having the incorrect cargo weight capacity listed and some having a negative cargo carrying capacity.

The Solution

SET will notify the customers by mail of the noncompliance. An accurate label will be provided to apply over the inaccurate label at no charge. Each label will be customized for the corresponding customer’s vehicle based on the net weight of the accessories installed. Fifteen (15) vehicles have been identified which cannot be remedied solely with a revised label. They may require an alternate remedy to remain in line with net weight restrictions and allow cargo carrying capacity to shift out of negative. These customers will be contacted separately, and options provided, one of which may be the  exchange or upgrade of accessories at no charge to reduce the overall weight and increase cargo carrying load capacity.

Customers will be notified and arrangements made to provide a suitable remedy. SET expects the mailing of customer notification letters to begin on or about December 24, 2018. Owners may contact SET customer service at 1-866-405-4226. SET’s number for this recall is SET18A. Owners may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 18V-753.

Sean ReyesToyota Recalls Nearly 1300 4Runners for Insufficient Cargo Load Capacity

Toyota Recalls Certain 2019 C-HR Vehicles Due to Improperly Tightened Axle Bearing Bolts

Laguna Hills, CA – October 19, 2018 – Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain 2019 Toyota C-HR vehicles due to insufficiently tightened rear axle bearing bolts. The recall is expected to include 681 potentially affected vehicles, as no more than 0.1% of those included are expected to actually contain the defect. Toyota estimates this based on the results of inspections that, as of September 25th, out of 4500 inspected vehicles, there were 4 vehicles with the hub bearing bolts not tightened sufficiently.

The Defect

According to the NHTSA Recall Safety Report, the subject vehicles are equipped with left-hand and right-hand rear axle hub bearing assemblies. These are connected to the rear axle carrier subassemblies by four rear axle bearing bolts. One or more rear axle bearing bolts on a few vehicles may not have been sufficiently during the manufacturing process at one particular facility.

Any insufficiently tightened bolt could become loose during vehicle operation and could eventually detach. Any detached bolt could damage the rear brake components during rotation, or result in a rear wheel detaching completely, Either of these events can cause a reduction of brake performance or a potential loss of vehicle stability, increasing the risk of a crash.

Timeline of Events

In late August 2018, Toyota received a field report from the Russia market about a 2018MY C-HR. The report indicated that of the four rear left-hand axle hub and bearing bolts, three were loose and one was missing altogether.  Toyota Motor Manufacturing Turkey (TMMT) investigated the possibility of any abnormality in the hub and bearing assembly manufacturing process.

A review revealed that during the production period spanning four days after a planned manufacturing facility shutdown in mid-June, tightening errors occurred sporadically in the hub bearing tightening process. This was confirmed to be due to several process and equipment changes in the hub and bearing assembly manufacturing process which caused a failure to confirm the torque and allowed the passing of parts to the next process.

TMMT initiated a 100% tightening torque confirmation and introduced a series of improvements to prevent bolt tightening error and began to inspect the vehicles in Toyota inventory equipped with the hub and bearing assemblies that were produced in the indicated production period.

An additional field report was received on September 18th from the UK market describing a C-HR vehicle produced outside the time period, with two loose and two missing rear left-hand axle bearing bolts. The investigation allowed an expanded time period for potential issues to be identified and confirmed, and Toyota decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall campaign in early October.

The Solution

All known owners of the subject vehicles will be notified by first class mail to return their vehicles to a Toyota dealer. The dealership will inspect all rear axle hub bearing bolts, and if a bolt is found to be loose or detached, the dealer will replace the rear axle hub bearing assembly and rear axle carrier sub-assembly with new parts, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin November 9, 2018. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371. Toyota’s number for this recall is J0Y.

Owners may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 18V-710.

Sean ReyesToyota Recalls Certain 2019 C-HR Vehicles Due to Improperly Tightened Axle Bearing Bolts

Toyota Recalls More Than 168,000 Vehicles for Potential Airbag Malfunction

Laguna Hills, CA – October 16, 2018 – Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain 2018-2019 Toyota Tundra and Sequoia vehicles and 2019 Toyota Avalon and Avalon Hybrid vehicles. The air bag electronic control unit (ECU) may erroneously detect a fault during the vehicle start-up self-check. If this occurs, the ECU may not deploy the airbags as intended, in the event of a crash. The defect affects in excess of a potential 168,000 vehicles.

The Defect

According to the NHTSA Recall Safety Report, due to inappropriate programming in the subject vehicles, the Airbag (SRS) ECU may erroneously detect a fault in one or more of the front or side SRS satellite sensors during a self-check that occurs at each vehicle start up. This condition will cause the vehicle to set a specific trouble code, disable the affected sensor(s), sound a warning buzzer, activate multiple warning lights, and display a message on the combination meter display. If a fault is erroneously detected, the Airbag ECU may not appropriately identify the crash condition if a crash occurs, and the airbags may not deploy as intended, significantly increasing the chance of injury.

Toyota is unable to provide an estimate of the percentage of the vehicles to actually contain the noncompliance. Whether the condition will occur prior to first sale and constitute a noncompliance will differ depending on part variation and whether normal sensor variances will cause the inappropriate programming of the diagnostic function to set a specific trouble code in each case.

Timeline of Events

In early July 2018, Toyota received reports describing illumination of the SRS warning light, which was the result of one of a specific type of diagnostic trouble code (DTC) being set. The light was accompanied by a warning buzzer, master warning light illumination, and a message on the multi-information display. Toyota recovered replaced SRS satellite sensors and began an investigation.

In mid-July 2018, the supplier performed bench testing of the sensors alone, and did not identify a fault. Testing was then conducted with the sensors connected to the entire SRS system including the ECU and, in some cases, the same DTCs related to the airbag sensors were recreated.

In early August, a review of the Airbag ECU software identified that the parameters for this self-check were not correct for the type of satellite sensors used in the system, which could result in a failure of the self-check. Failure of the self-check could disable only the sensor which failed for that key cycle. Each ignition on cycle performs the self-check, and factors such as heat can affect whether the sensor will pass this check using the incorrect parameters.

A study was initiated to evaluate how the SRS system would function in the event of a crash with any of these satellite sensors disabled. Based on the results of the investigation, the results of the aforementioned analysis, and the field information from the U.S. market indicating that this phenomenon could occur prior to first sale, on September 28, 2018, Toyota decided that the subject vehicles may not meet certain requirements and issued a voluntary recall to correct the problem.

The Solution

All known owners of the subject vehicles will be notified by first class mail to return their vehicles to a Toyota dealer. The dealers will update the software of the Airbag ECU at no cost to owners. As the owner notification letters will be mailed out well within the active period of the Toyota New Vehicle Limited Warranty, all involved vehicle owners for this recall would have been provided a repair at no cost under Toyota’s Warranty. The recall is expected to begin October 22, 2018.

Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371. Toyota’s number for this recall is J0X. Owners may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 18V-685.

Sean ReyesToyota Recalls More Than 168,000 Vehicles for Potential Airbag Malfunction

Toyota Recalls More Than 80,000 Prius Hybrids for Vehicle Stall Problems

Laguna Hills, CA – October 15, 2018 – Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain 2010-2014 Toyota Prius and 2012-2014 Toyota Prius V vehicles due to excessive voltage in the inverter which may cause the hybrid system to shut down and the vehicle to stall while being driven. This recall affected more than 80,000 vehicles, including ones subject to prior recalls.

The Defect

According to the NHTSA Recall Safety Report, the vehicles subject to this recall contain software used to control the Intelligent Power Module (IPM) within the inverter assembly. This module is part of the vehicle’s hybrid system. Certain characteristics of the software used to control the boost converter in the IPM could cause higher thermal stress than normal to occur in specific transistors in the IPM, specifically during high-load driving activities, such as accelerating during highway driving. Over time, stress could damage certain transistors.

In limited instances, the motor/generator ECU could reset, or – if a specific transistor within the IPM fails in a certain way during a high-load driving condition – an abnormally high voltage could be generated. In either case, there is the possibility that the hybrid system could shut down instead of entering a failsafe driving mode, which could cause the vehicle to lose motive power while driving at higher speeds, increasing the risk of a crash. Drivers may be warned of transistor damage via the illumination of various warning lights and the display of a warning message on the instrument panel.

Timeline of Events

Between the month of January and March 2018, based on VOQs and other available information, NHTSA contacted Toyota about allegations of potential incidents where vehicles experienced a loss of motive power while driving at some time after having received the software updates from prior, related recalls (14V-053 and 15V-449.) Toyota began reviewing the information and recovering parts from the field.

Toyota conducted a search of available data for vehicles involved in 14V-053 and 15V-449 and identified a limited number of instances where the data in connection with certain inverter-related trouble codes suggested a possible “ready off.” Based on an initial analysis of recovered failed parts, damage was observed in certain transistors. Toyota surveyed vehicles to identify the software version present in field vehicles, and, in those cases where an inverter failure occurred. Continued analysis of the recovered failed inverters and freeze frame data in a limited number of cases did identify an unexpected, abnormally high voltage value related to the hybrid boost converter.

In September 2018, a design review of the software used to control the hybrid system components in addition to a review of the inverter circuit design identified a potential mechanism for the hybrid system to shutdown instead of entering a failsafe mode based on the observation of an abnormally high voltage in extremely rare cases. Toyota could not exclude the possibility that a limited population of vehicles did not successfully receive a software update in one or both of the ECUs, and the company decided to conduct a voluntary safety recall campaign.

The Solution

According to the Toyota Defect Information Report, Toyota will notify owners, and dealers will update the software for the motor/generator control electronic control unit (ECU) and the hybrid control ECU as necessary, free of charge. Interim notices informing owners of the safety risk began October 22, 2018. Owners will receive a second notice when the remedy becomes available.

Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371. Toyota’s number for this recall is J0V. Owners may also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA Campaign Number for this recall is 18V-684. The software updates in this recall are needed even if the vehicle had the software previously updated under recalls 14V-053 or 15V-449.

Sean ReyesToyota Recalls More Than 80,000 Prius Hybrids for Vehicle Stall Problems

Toyota Recalls Multiple 2018-2019 Vehicles Due to Air Bag Deployment Issue

Laguna Hills, CA – October 12, 2018 – Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (Toyota) is recalling certain 2018-2019 Toyota Tundra and Sequoia vehicles and 2019 Toyota Avalon and Avalon Hybrid vehicles due to a programming error that could affect air bag deployment.

The Defect

According to the NHTSA Safety Recall Report, Toyota has determined that due to inappropriate programming of the air bag electronic control unit (ECU), a fault may be erroneously detected and disable a front or side supplemental restraint system (SRS) sensor.

If this were to occur, the air bag ECU may not appropriately identify a crash condition, the air bags may not deploy as intended, and as a result, this could lead to an increased risk of injury in the event of a crash.

Timeline of Events

Toyota received reports describing illumination of the SRS warning light accompanied by a warning buzzer, master warning light illumination, and a message on the multi-information display, and began an investigation in June 2018.

A review of the Airbag ECU software identified that parameters for a routine self-check were not correct for the type of satellite sensors used in this system. This can result in a failure of the self-check, which will disable only the sensor which failed for that key cycle. Factors such as heat can affect whether the sensor will pass this check using the incorrect parameters.

Based on the results of the investigation, Toyota decided that the subject vehicles may not meet certain mandated requirements and issued a recall.

The Solution

All known owners of the subject vehicles will be notified by first class mail to return their vehicles to a Toyota dealer. The dealers will update the software of the Airbag ECU at no cost to owners. As the owner notification letters will be mailed out well within the active period of the Toyota New Vehicle Limited Warranty, all involved vehicles are assumed to be covered for this repair under Toyota’s Warranty.

The recall is expected to begin October 22, 2018. Owners may contact Toyota customer service at 1-888-270-9371. Toyota’s number for this recall is J0X. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153). The NHTSA number for this recall is 18V-685.

Sean ReyesToyota Recalls Multiple 2018-2019 Vehicles Due to Air Bag Deployment Issue