Toyota recalls 6.5 million cars, trucks to fix potential fire risk

Toyota today recalled 6.5 million vehicles to fix a potential fire hazard due to a power window switch.

Toyota will recall 6.5 million vehicles to fix a potential fire hazard. Of the 6.5 million vehicles, 2.7 million are in North America, 1.2 million are in Europe and 600,000 are in Japan, the automaker said from its headquarters today. According to Automotive News, the models include:

There were also reports that models based on the Matrix, notably the Pontiac Vibe, may also be involved in the recall though that has not been confirmed.

The automaker said the problem was due to inadequate application of electrical grease. The grease is sprayed on contact points in the power switch. Over time, the debris can fall into the door-mounted switch. If it falls where there is too little grease a short-circuit may result. In turn, this causes the switch assembly to overheat and melt, potentially leading to fire and smoke.

Toyota has received 12 problem reports related to this issue. In one, a motorist received a burned hand. In the other 11, the door trim was burned. The fix will take about 45 minutes at a Toyota dealer. The repair involves applying a new coat of heat-resistant grease. If the window is operating improperly, the dealer will install a new circuit board.

The recall includes vehicles that were produced outside of Japan between:

  • August 2005 and August 2006
  • January 2009 and December 2010

In addition, vehicles that were built in Japan between:

  • January 2005 and August 2006
  • August 2008 and June 2010

will be recalled.

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