Toyota engineers have discovered that there is a possibility that the webbing of the lap belts could become cut in the seat frame and separate. The described possibility would only appear in a very severe frontal crash, as Toyota representatives explained, and could only happen if the lap belt would come into contact with a portion of the metal seat cushion frame.
There have been no accidents or injuries caused by this particular situation. However, Toyota has decided to prevent any potential injuries that could be caused by any of the 1,124,000 vehicles targeted by this recall action in the U.S.
The fix will add resin covers to the metal seat cushion frame of the back seats. Owners of the involved vehicles will be notified by Toyota through first class mail. Naturally, the repair will come at no cost to the owners.
As usual, safety recall inquiry by individual VIN is available on the NHTSA website. Customers who own RAV4 vehicles of the specified model years can also contact Toyota’s Customer Service department.
This is not Toyota’s first recall campaign, and unquestionably not the most widespread. The Japanese brand has had its share of recall campaigns, and the recent Takata airbag fiasco has not done it much good. The MY 2004-2005 RAV is part of the Takata driver airbag inflator callback, and that will also be replaced at no charge by an authorized Toyota dealer.
The front passenger airbag inflator recall targets both Takata parts and components from other suppliers. The latter includes models like the Corolla, Corolla Matrix, Tundra, Sequoia, and the Lexus SC430.
UPDATE: As it happens, the total recall number is actually 2.87 million vehicles from all over the world. Over 625,000 vehicles in Europe are affected as well, along with 424,000 cars in China, 177,000 in Japan and hundreds of thousand of vehicles from other markets.