Toyota has just announced it will conduct a voluntary safety recall involving certain 2006 to early 2011 model year RAV4 compact SUVs and 2010 model year Lexus HS 250h passenger cars for a problem with the rear suspension that may pose a safety risk.
In the U.S., the recall involves some 760,000 Toyota RAV4s and 18,000 Lexus HS 250h cars. No other Toyota or Lexus vehicles are involved in the recall.
2006 Toyota RAV4 Limited
According to an article in The Detroit News, four drivers reported losing control while driving at high speeds and Toyota said that nine crashes and three minor injuries resulted from the problem.
The Office of Defect Investigations (ODI) of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) opened its probe into the potential rear suspension arm assembly failure of 2006-2008 Toyota RAV4s in June 2012.
UPDATE: NHTSA has issued an official recall notice covering these vehicles.
For its part, Toyota says that the problem is the result of technicians not properly tightening lock nuts on the rear suspension arm during service for rear wheel alignment. If not sufficiently tightened, the automaker says that excessive movement may occur at the arm’s threaded portion, followed by the formation of rust. This condition may cause wear of the threaded portion of the rear suspension arm, causing the arm to separate.
Toyota said it is currently working on a fix for the problem and will notify owners when a remedy is available, instructing them to make an appointment with a Toyota or Lexus dealer to have the repairs made at no charge.
2010 Lexus HS 250h
In the meantime, consumers who own vehicles from one of these model years and want more information can go to the Toyota recall website or call Toyota at 1-800-331-4331, or the Lexus recall website or contact Lexus at 1-800-255-2987.
Alternatively, owners of vehicles involved in the campaign may also contact NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 or go to http://www.safercar.gov. Reference the NHTSA campaign ID No. 12V373000.