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Recall advice updated as global numbers confirmed

Following an announcement from Toyota Motor Corporation updating a 2013 global recall, Toyota New Zealand has confirmed today that the recall affects close to 3000 fewer New Zealand new vehicles than previously thought. Numbers of affected vehicles imported into New Zealand by third parties are yet to be confirmed. In either case, Toyota New Zealand will provide any parts required free of charge.

Toyota New Zealand General Manager Customer Services Spencer Morris says the updated information relates to the recall in April 2013 of Avensis, Corolla and Picnic vehicles built from 2000 to 2005. At that time it was thought more than 8000 vehicles were affected, but it is now known that only 5415 New Zealand new vehicles are affected.

“We want to reassure our customers that this recall is precautionary only, and there have been no reported instances of accidents or injuries related to this matter either in New Zealand or globally.

“While we know that a recall can be an inconvenience for customers, and we apologise for that and any concern caused, we believe that remedying this issue and taking care of our customers is the right course of action.”

Mr Morris says that as well as being able to reassure customers that fewer vehicles are affected, Toyota has decided to replace the affected components in any affected vehicle. This will take between two and three hours, with owners contacted by letter.

Toyota New Zealand is now working to identify any used vehicles imported by other parties that may be affected.

“As always, if a Toyota vehicle is affected – regardless of the importer – we will remedy the situation,” Mr Morris says. “In every case, the remedy is provided free of charge and at minimal inconvenience.”

The affected vehicles are equipped with front passenger airbag inflators which may have been assembled with improperly manufactured propellant wafers. There is a small chance these could deploy abnormally in the event of a collision.

Toyota New Zealand will write to each affected owner, and provide the replacement parts and fitting required free of charge. Anyone immediately concerned about their vehicle can contact Toyota New Zealand on 0800 TOYOTA or contact their dealer.

Q&A

Why is there an update to this recall of vehicles in New Zealand?
A.    A number of vehicles were subject to a passenger side front airbag recall in April 2013as we identified potential the part may not operate correctly. Since then, we have been able to identify which New Zealand new vehicles are affected, and have chosen as a customer service measure to replace all affected parts.
Some owners may already have been in to their Toyota dealer for an inspection and/or replacement. We now want to ensure that everyone affected receives a replacement part – and to reassure people that are not affected.

Q.    What do I need to do?
A.    Toyota will send a further notification letter to affected owners advising them of the update to the recall issue and asking them to make an appointment with their authorised Toyota dealer. We will replace the affected part, at Toyota dealerships nationwide for vehicles in New Zealand that are affected.

Q.    What models are affected?
A.    Vehicles sold new in New Zealand for the passenger side front airbag recall are limited and these were manufactured between the following dates:

  • Avensis - 2002 to 2003
  • Corolla - 2000 to 2005
  • Picnic - 2001 to 2005

Some used imported models may also be involved. We are working to identify these vehicles.

Q.    How do I know if my vehicle is subject to this?
A.    Toyota New Zealand will contact the current owners of the vehicles it has imported to advise them of the corrective actions required. For vehicles imported by other parties, we will request a list of owners from the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) and follow the same contact procedure. In the interim, you can contact an authorised Toyota dealer or our Customer Dialogue Centre to check your registration number. 

Q.    My car is a used import, is it covered?
A.    Yes. Toyota New Zealand's safety recall policy is to support parts and labour costs of any new or used Toyota vehicle, irrespective of the importing channel.

Q.    What exactly is a recall?
A.    A vehicle safety recall is conducted by a vehicle manufacturer in the event of a component failure (or potential failure) that may prevent the driver from controlling the vehicle in a safe and proper manner. Examples of such components include brakes, steering, suspension, headlights, and airbags.

Q.    What is wrong with my vehicle?
A.    The affected vehicles are equipped with front side passenger airbag inflators which could have been assembled with improperly manufactured propellant wafers. This could cause the inflator to rupture and the front side passenger airbag to inflate abnormally in a crash. In the worst case scenario this could possibly lead to fire.

Q.    Have there been any serious incidents in New Zealand or elsewhere?
A.    None.

Q.    How long will it take to repair?
A.    Remedial action will take approximately 2.5 hours and will be at no cost to customers.

Q.    How will my vehicle be fixed?
A.    An authorised Toyota dealer will replace the airbag inflator.

Q.    How much does it cost?
A.    It’s free.

Q.    If I’ve already had this repair done, will I get reimbursed?
A.    Yes. Please talk the authorised Toyota dealer where you had the repair completed, who will arrange for reimbursement if your vehicle was one of the affected units.

Q.    I was contacted previously and my vehicle has been inspected but the part wasn’t replaced. What should I do?
A.    We have made the decision to replace all parts, including any previously inspected, as a customer service measure. Contact your Toyota dealer.

Q.    If I have more questions who do I talk to?
A.    We are here to help, so please contact us or your preferred Toyota dealer.