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Thousands of Toyotas recalled over glitch

THREE instances of steering 'problems' have been reported here, as Toyota recalls up to 34,500 Avensis and Prius models for inspection.

It is part of a massive global recall in response to 20 reports of steering 'knocking'.

But the cars are safe to drive, the company has insisted.

This comes in the wake of last month's recall involving 36,000 cars here over a faulty power-window switch.

It is also contacting owners of 749 Prius models over a separate potential problem with the water pump in the hybrid system.

In all, Toyota is recalling 2.8 million vehicles worldwide for the steering-shaft and water-pump defects.

Here, it is contacting owners of 32,650 Avensis and 1,859 Prius cars made between August 2002 and September 2008 over the potential 'knocking' problems. Toyota says the move is purely precautionary.

The potential problem is wear in splines (little ridges) on the steering shaft over a long time. It can lead to knocking and a possible reduction in steering response.

The knocking can occur after prolonged and frequent turning of the steering wheel to the full-left or full-right position while driving at slow speeds.

Inspection and repair, if needed, takes about an hour at no cost to the customer. Alongside that, the company is recalling 749 Prius models – made between September 2003 and March 2009 – to inspect a coil wire within the hybrid water pump. Repairs will take an hour and a half, again at no cost to the customer.

It is possible that a few Prius models will require attention for both problems. A warning light on the dashboard will come on should the water pump in the hybrid system fail.

Owners will be written to and asked to bring their cars for inspection to their local dealer.

When contacted by the Irish Independent, a Toyota Ireland spokesman said there had been three instances of 'knocking' reported here, but that there was no question of the cars being unsafe to drive.


There have been nine reported cases in Europe and no reports of any associated accidents.

Last month, Toyota recalled up to 36,000 Toyota cars in Ireland over a faulty power-window switch.

Separately, Honda Ireland has recalled 2,126 CRV vehicles manufactured between 2002 and 2006 due to problems with the electric-window switch.

Overheating could occur where water entered the driver's side window switch. This could result in smoke or melting or, in extreme cases, fire.

Irish Independent