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Toyota Announces Recall of 1.9 Million RAV4 SUVs in the U.S. Due to Fire Hazard

Nearly 1.9 million Toyota RAV4 SUVS recalled in US over fire risk


Nearly 1.9 million Toyota RAV4 SUVS recalled in US over fire risk

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Toyota is recalling roughly 1.9 million RAV4 sport utility vehicles in the U.S. because the batteries can shift during sharp turns and potentially cause a fire.

The recall, which Toyota announced Wednesday, affects certain RAV4s from the 2013 through 2018 model years. The Japanese automaker said in a statement that some replacement 12-volt batteries used in the SUVs have smaller top dimensions than others. If the hold-down clamp is not tightened properly, the battery could move, allowing the positive terminal to contact the clamp and short circuit, increasing the risk of a fire, the company said.

Toyota said it is still preparing a fix. When the remedy is ready, dealers will replace the hold-down clamp, battery tray and positive terminal cover with improved ones. The company said it will notify owners by late December.

Toyota did not say in its statement whether the problem has caused any fires or injuries. But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it has received nine reports that the 12-volt batteries may have caused fires, loss of electrical power or engine stalling. The agency also has eight reports of fires that started on the driver’s side of the engine compartment where the battery is located.

Toyota spokesman Aaron Fowles said the company is not advising people to park the RAV4s outdoors. It is asking those who haven’t had their vehicles inspected to take them to a dealer soon so technicians can make sure replacement batteries were installed properly and the holding clamps are tight. They should also get the recall repairs done when they’re available, he said.

Owners can check to see if their RAV4s are involved by going to www.nhtsa.gov/recalls and entering their vehicle identification number. Owners can also call the Toyota Brand Engagement Center at (800) 331-4331.

Toyota on Oct. 26 also recalled roughly 751,000 Toyota Highlander SUVs in the U.S. to fix a problem with the tabs that secure the vehicles’ front lower bumper covers. Even a minor crash could cause the bumper cover assembly to fall off, a potential hazard to drivers, the company said.

In August, Toyota recalled about 168,000 Toyota Tundra and Tundra Hybrid vehicles from model years 2020-2023 because of a potential fire risk. The vehicles’ plastic fuel tube could move and rub against a brake line, causing a fuel leak, according to a recall notice issued by the company. The leaked fuel could cause a fire in the presence of an ignition source, according to Toyota.

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