U.S. safety regulators investigating door fires in Toyota Camry, RAV4 models

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 12, 2012

Complaints about the 2007 model year Toyota Camry sedans and RAV4 crossover SUVs have prompted safety regulators in the U.S. to open a preliminary investigation over the risk of driver's side door fires. According to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, about 830,000 vehicles could be affected.

While this isn’t a recall, it could lead to one. The NHTSA has received six complaints so far. According to the filing, the fires seem to have originated from the power window master switch found on the driver's side door. Toyota said that it is waiting for the NHTSA to provide more information before it submits its response.

On February 7, Toyota got the Preliminary Evaluation Opening Resume for the 2007 RAV4 and Camry but it has yet to receive the agency’s information request. Toyota said that it will cooperate fully with the NHTSA’s investigation.

Furthermore, documents filed with the NHTSA show that Nissan Motor Co. has issued the recall of nearly 37,000 Versa small cars with manual transmissions in the U.S. since it’s possible that they may be shifted out of park without depressing the brake pedal.

 The NHTSA said that the 36,608 Versas from model year 2012 with manual transmissions may sense some interference between the shifter rod and shift knob. This may compel the driver to unintentionally shift the vehicle into gear without stepping on the brake pedal, increasing the probability of an accident.

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