Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. has announced plans to conduct voluntary safety recalls of approximately 700,000 Model Year 2010-2014 Prius vehicles and, combined, approximately 260,000 Model Year 2012 Toyota RAV4, 2012-2013 Toyota Tacoma, and 2012-2013 Lexus RX 350 vehicles sold in the United States to address two separate issues.
- Toyota will update the motor/generator control ECU and hybrid control ECU software on certain Model Year 2010-2014 Prius vehicles. The software’s current settings could result in higher thermal stress in certain transistors, potentially causing them to become damaged. If this happens, various warning lights will illuminate and the vehicle can enter a failsafe mode. In rare circumstances, the hybrid system might shut down while the vehicle is being driven, resulting in the loss of power and the vehicle coming to a stop.
- Toyota will update the skid control ECU software on certain 2012 Toyota RAV4, 2012-2013 Toyota Tacoma, and 2012-2013 Lexus RX 350 models in order to address an electronic circuit condition that can cause the Vehicle Stability Control, Anti-lock Brake, and Traction Control functions to intermittently turn off. If these systems are off, standard braking operation remains fully functional.
Toyota has received no reports of accidents or injuries associated with either condition. As part of these recalls, owners of affected vehicles will receive a software update free of charge. Owners will be notified by first class mail when the software updates are available at their dealers.
In a separate announcement last fall, Toyota launched a voluntary safety recall of approximately 803,000 Model Year 2012-2013 Camry, Camry Hybrid, Avalon, Avalon Hybrid, and Venza vehicles due to a problem with the air conditioning condenser housing. In the involved vehicles, water from the housing could leak onto the airbag control module and cause a short circuit, resulting in illumination of the airbag warning light. In some instances, the air bag(s) could become disabled or could inadvertently deploy.
In limited instances, the power steering assist function could also become inoperable if a communication line in the airbag control module is damaged. Loss of power steering assist results in increased steering effort. To remedy this issue, Toyota dealers will apply sealant and install a cover to the air conditioning condenser housing seam located above the airbag control module.
General Motors has just announced a recall of 778,660 Chevrolet Cobalt and Pontiac G5 vehicles made for the 2005-07 model years to repair the ignition switch. GM says 159,400 of the vehicles were sold in Canada and Mexico, but the rest are here in the U.S. The recall will address a faulty ignition switch that could be jolted into the “off” position if the car hits a bump in the road while it is being driven, or during the impact of a crash, or by the weight of too many other keys on the ignition key ring. GM reports more than 20 frontal impact crashes where airbags did not deploy because the ignition switch turned off before the impact. Dealers will replace the switch at no charge to owners, but while awaiting their appointment, GM suggests drivers of affected cars remove unnecessary keys from their key rings.