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Toyota recalls 1.3 million more cars

Another one: The Toyota Corolla Matrix sold in the United States is one of the vehicles caught up in an airbag detonation scare.

More safety scares for Toyota, but not on Corolla or Lexus IS sold in Australia

Toyota logo31 Jan 2013

TOYOTA has recalled 1.3 million Toyota and Lexus cars over airbag and wiper faults, but Australian drivers need not worry – the safety scare does not apply to any vehicles sold here.

More than a million of the vehicles involved in the two separate recalls were sold in the United States, with the others sold in Japan and Mexico.

Toyota Australia media and external affairs manager Beck Angel said a check of the recall details shows none of the vehicles made it to this market.

“It applies to a Corolla model that was not sold here, and the Lexus recall applies only to left-hand-drive models,” she said.

It is the third big safety recall by Toyota in six months, and comes after the Japanese company was fined a record $17.3 million by US authorities in December for tardy action on a safety recall on Lexus RX floor mats.

The latest recalls involve an airbag control module on more than a million Corollas and Corolla Matrix wagons sold in 2003 and 2004, and a loose nut on windscreen wipers of 385,000 Lexus IS sedans and convertibles sold between 2006 and 2012.

According to Toyota, the Corolla airbag modules have an integrated circuit that is susceptible to internal shorting that can damage the unit by overheating and possibly detonate the airbag and seatbelt pre-tensioners.

Automotive News reports that 18 cases of accidental deployment have been reported, causing minor injuries such as abrasions and two crashes.

Earlier this month, 7000 Jeep Cherokees and Grand Cherokees sold in Australia were recalled after a similar airbag and seatbelt pre-tensioner detonation problem.

In a separate recall, wipers on Lexus IS luxury cars are to be checked for a loose nut that might prevent the wiper arm from working under loads such as heavy snow.

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