Toyota Motor Corp. will recall around 185,000 vehicles around the world after discovering a glitch in the electric power steering system that could result to a heavier steering. According to spokeswoman Shiori Hashimoto, the recall will affect 130,000 vehicles in Japan, over 7,400 in Italy, around 7,050 vehicles in Germany and about 7,000 in France.
There will also be recalls in the United States and the United Kingdom. The recall will include the Yaris subcompact, which is built in Europe at Toyota's Valenciennes plant in France.
The carmaker launched the third-generation gasoline variant of the Yaris in Europe in summer 2011; and a hybrid variant in June 2012. Toyota has already recalled Yaris models -- known in Japan as the Vitz -- built between November 2010 and March 2012. Toyota it also recalling the Verso-S -- known in Japan as the Ractis -- built between August 2010 and August 2011.
In a statement, Toyota said that water droplets forming on certain wires in the power steering control module could lead to short circuits. This suspends the power steering assist, making the steering heavier. Hashimoto remarked that no accidents or injuries have been reported from the glitch.
She said that the Japanese carmaker will replace the power steering control module, a process that only takes one to two hours. In June 2013, Toyota said it would recall around 242,000 hybrid vehicles around the world, including the best-selling Prius, due to a brake design flaw. The Yaris accounted for almost 22 percent of Toyota total sales in Europe in 2012. [source: Reuters]