The faulty seatbelt design, which could cause a noise-absorber device to melt when the seatbelt tensioner is activated in a collision, led to a fire in Japan, Toyota was quoted as saying by wheels24.co.za. Exhaust-gas recirculation (EGR) pipe could crack due to its defect and cause exhaust gas emissions to leak.
Several countries are affected by Toyota's decision, including Japan and South Africa. Japan alone is subject to more than half a million units recall, while the rest of the faulty cars come from markets in Europe or North America.
The operation is set to start on Thursday, January 29. Owners will be contacted by their local dealerships and they are told the repairs could take up to one and a half hours to complete. Total costs of the recall has not been revealed by Toyota officials.
Toyota Vitz, or Yaris for some markets, is a line of subcompact cars first launched by Toyota in 1999 and designed by Sotiris Kovos. In 2005, the original 4 cylinder 1.0 engine was replaced by a 3-cylinder engine also found in the Toyota Aygo and Daihatsu Sirion. The 1.3 liter engine was revised to offer slightly more power while maintaining fuel economy.