Toyota Issues 6.4-Million Vehicle Recall for Five Safety Defects

Apr 09, 2014 01:44 PM EDT | Jordan Ecarma

In the midst of the headline-making General Motors recall, another automaker takes a hit: Toyota has recalled a record 6.4 million vehicles to mend five potential safety defects.

The announcement, which comprises 27 Toyota models dating back to 2005, marks one of the biggest recalls in industry history, Bloomberg reported.

"Something is wrong," Koji Endo, an analyst at Advanced Research Japan in Tokyo, told Bloomberg. "They may even need to review their production process. Even if the problem is with the suppliers, Toyota should be responsible for it."

The Japanese carmaker said it is taking extra precautions, a smart decision in light of the recent GM debacle, Bloomberg Businessweek reported. No accidents or fatalities have been reported yet in connection with the Toyota recall, while ignition switch failures in GM vehicles have been related to 13 deaths. 

"This is Toyota being more active in calling back vehicles to ensure quality," Takaki Nakanishi, a Tokyo-based analyst for Jefferies Group LLC, told Bloomberg. "The number is big, but the faults are minor and not critical."

The company's reputation for reliable, quality vehicles has taken multiple hits in recent years, with the latest recall marking the eighth such announcement since 2009.

The potential problems involved in the recall include seat adjustments, steering columns and windshield wiper motors. Some of the vehicles are being recalled for more than one issue.

Around 3.5 million RAV4, Corolla, Yaris, Highlander, Tacoma and Camry vehicles from model years 2004 to 2010 are being recalled for problematic spiral cables that may stop airbags from deploying on the driver's side, according to Bloomberg. The number accounts for more than half of the models sold in North America.

Toyota has also recalled some 2.3 million vehicles to inspect their front-seat rails, which have springs that could break if the seats are adjusted often. Additionally, about 760,000 vehicles worldwide have been recalled for steering column brackets that are potentially unsafe.

The company hasn't yet outlined a timetable for the recall. Owners can contact Toyota at 1-800-331-4331.

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