40,000 Toyota cars recalled in NZ

Last updated 20:28 09/04/2014

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Up to 40,000 Kiwis are affected by a worldwide recall of nearly 7 million Toyota vehicles - one of the largest global recalls in the auto industry.

The New Zealand owners will receive a letter informing them of faulty steering or seating, Toyota New Zealand said on Wednesday night.

The auto giant said 200,000 cars in the Oceania region, out of 6.86 million worldwide, were affected by a spiral cable recall.

Tens of thousands of other vehicles in New Zealand were also in need of replacements for parts such as seat rails, steering column brackets and telescopic steering adjustments.

Toyota New Zealand customer services manager Spencer Morris said he estimated about 30,000 to 40,000 New Zealanders would be affected.

Morris said the recall was a precautionary step.

He said there have been no reported instances of accidents or incidents related to any of these recalls.

“While we do apologise for any concern and inconvenience caused to our customers, Toyota is ensuring any possible quality issues are addressed before problems arise… In every case the remedy is free of charge to customers.”

Anyone concerned about their vehicle can contact Toyota New Zealand on 0800 TOYOTA or contact their dealer.

Toyota Motor Corporation, the world's biggest automaker, said the recall tally was preliminary and subject to review until a formal announcement in Japan later on Wednesday.

It was not immediately clear if the faults were due to design or manufacturing issues.

The New Zealand recall involves the following models:

Spiral cable

Certain RAV4, Prado and Hilux vehicles produced between June 2004 and December 2010 and sold as new in New Zealand are affected by a spiral cable recall. This affects 200,000 vehicles in Oceania, and Toyota New Zealand staff are working to identify every New Zealand vehicle affected. The spiral cable is installed in the steering column to connect steering wheel mounted electrical systems.

Seat rail 

7506 Yaris cars produced between January 2005 and August 2010 and sold New Zealand new are affected by a seat rail recall. There is potential for the springs used in the seat locking mechanism to break if the seat is adjusted very frequently. This also affects 6153 imported Vitz, Ist, Belta and Ractis vehicles.

Steering column bracket

100 Yaris cars with tilt/telescopic steering adjustment, produced between September 2005 and February 2009, are affected. 1037 used imported Ractis and Ist are also affected.

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Imported vehicle recall:

Drain outlet

993 imported Toyota Ractis vehicles are affected by a recall relating to possible clogging of drain outlets in the cowl top reinforcement directly under the wiper motor mounting area.

- Fairfax NZ, with Reuters

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