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Toyota Recalls 7.4 Million Vehicles Over Window Switches

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Posted on Oct 10, 2012
Photo by Martin Abegglen (CC-BY-SA)

Toyota, which only just reclaimed its status as the world’s biggest three years after a major recall that raised questions about its vehicles’ safety, is once again asking customers to bring their vehicles in for inspection.

This time it’s faulty window switches—not stuck accelerator pedals as in 2009—that are to blame for the recall.

The following is Toyota’s own explanation of the problem:

The driver’s side PWMS may experience a “notchy” or sticky feel during operation. If commercially available lubricants are applied to the switch in an attempt to address the “notchy” or sticky feel, melting of the switch assembly or smoke could occur and lead to a fire under some circumstances.

The “notchy” or sticky feel may be caused by an uneven application of the grease during the switch assembly process at the supplier. If the grease is not applied evenly, frequent use of the switch and normal operation may cause the grease to become carbonized and may eventually result in the deterioration of its lubricating properties.

The recall remedy will involve an inspection, switch disassembly, and application of special fluorine grease. The switch inspection and repair will be performed at no charge to the vehicle owner.

Of the 7.4 million vehicles globally under recall, roughly 2.5 million were sold in the U.S. and include the following models:

• 2007 to 2008 Yaris (approx. 110,300)
• 2007 to 2009 RAV4 (approx. 336,400)
• 2007 to 2009 Tundra (approx. 337,100)
• 2007 to 2009 Camry (approx. 938,100)
• 2007 to 2009 Camry Hybrid (approx. 116,800)
• 2008 to 2009 Scion xD (approx. 34,400)
• 2008 to 2009 Scion xA (approx. 77,500)
• 2008 to 2009 Sequoia (approx. 38,500)
• 2008 Highlander (approx. 135,400)
• 2008 Highlander Hybrid (approx. 23,200)
• 2009 Corolla (approx. 270,900)
• 2009 Matrix (approx. 53,800)

—Posted by Peter Z. Scheer.

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