Toyota recalls almost 3m RAV4s over seatbelt fault

Toyota is recalling almost 3m vehicles globally due to fears that the rear seatbelt could come apart in a crash.

It is not yet known how many vehicles are affected in Ireland.

However, a spokesperson for Toyota Ireland said it should have an idea of the number today.

The recall, involving 2.87m vehicles, involves Toyota’s RAV4 sports utility vehicle made between July 2005 and August 2014 and between October 2005 and January of this year.

The fault relates to the suspected separation of seatbelts in two accidents — one of which killed a passenger in Canada. The other related to a crash in the US where a passenger was injured.

However, Toyota has stressed that it is unclear if the defect was to blame in these cases.

“There is a possibility that, in the event of a very severe frontal crash, the lap seatbelt belt webbing could contact a portion of the metal seat cushion frame and come off,” stated a Toyota email. “If this occurs, the seatbelt may not properly restrain the occupant, which could increase the risk of injury.”

Just over half the vehicles, 1.3m being recalled are in North America, Toyota’s largest single market. A total of 625,000 vehicles will be recalled across Europe, 434,000 vehicles in China, 177,000 in Japan, and 307,000 in other regions.

Toyota said its dealers will fix the problem by adding resin covers to the metal seat-cushion frames in a process that will take between 30 and 60 minutes per vehicle.

“The condition does not occur in other vehicles, because the shape of the metal seat-cushion frame is different,” it said.

Last week, Honda revealed that it was recalling some 5.7m cars worldwide.

The recall, which involves an estimated 5,300 cars in Ireland, involves Takata Corp air bag inflators which can explode releasing shrapnel into the car.

The 5,300 cars affected here come from the Legend, FRV, Insight, Jazz, and Civic four-door models. The cars would have been made between 2005 and 2014.


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