Toyota announced today that it will conduct two separate safety recalls involving a total of approximately 1.02 million vehicles in the United States for problems with potentially defective airbags and windshield wipers. Worldwide, the two recalls affect a total of nearly 1.3 million vehicles.
2004 Toyota Matrix StdEnlarge Photo
The first recall is the largest, affecting some 752,000 Toyota Corolla and Corolla Matrix small cars from the 2003 and 2004 model years.
Toyota said that the airbag modules for the supplemental restraint system in certain Corolla and Corolla Matrix vehicles may have circuits susceptible to internal shorting. A short could create an abnormal flow of current, increase heat and damage the chips. The potential result is that the front airbags and/or front seat belt pretensioners could deploy without warning.
According to a Toyota spokesman’s statement to the Associated Press that was reported in The Detroit News and other media outlets, there have been 18 injuries in the U.S. related to the airbag issue, along with two crashes.
2012 Lexus ISEnlarge Photo
The second recall involves 2006 through 2012 model year Lexus IS luxury sedans. The problem here is defective windshield wipers that may become inoperable. In the U.S., the safety recall involves 270,000 Lexus IS sedans.
Here, the issue is that the front wiper arm may not be sufficiently tight. Heavy snow that builds up on the windshield could restrict wiper movement to the extent that one or both wipers could become inoperative.
According to Toyota, there have been no reported injuries or accidents involving the defective wipers.
What Toyota will do
Owners of 2003 and 2004 Toyota Corolla and Corolla Matrix small cars and 2006 through 2012 Lexus IS luxury sedans involved in the safety recalls will receive letters via first-class mail “in the near future.” They will be instructed to take their vehicles to any authorized Toyota or Lexus dealer for repairs, which will be performed at no charge.
In the meantime, owners of vehicles involved in the safety recalls with any questions or concerns may contact Toyota at 1-800-331-4331 and Lexus at 1-800-255-3987. Information is also available at www.toyota.com/recall and www.lexus.com/recall.