Toyota Vietnam starts to recall over 65,700 cars

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SaigonTimes English - 43 month(s) ago 7 readings

HCMC – Toyota Motor Vietnam (TMV) on Friday apologized to local customers for the technical problems relating to its cars and announced a plan starting on Monday to recall 65,700 Innova and Fortuner vehicles for repair.

By Quoc Hung - The Saigon Times Daily

HCMC – Toyota Motor Vietnam (TMV) on Friday apologized to local customers for the technical problems relating to its cars and announced a plan starting on Monday to recall 65,700 Innova and Fortuner vehicles for repair.

“TMV would like to express our sincere apology to all our dear customers for making you worried about the three quality issues” as claimed by a TMV engineer to the mass media recently, the automaker said in a statement. It asserted that the three technical faults relate to substandard rear wheel brake cylinder pressure, striker bolt No.8 tightening torque reduction and loose camber tightening.

These mistakes in its production process control have made its customers confused and worried about Toyota car quality, so TMV has decided to implement the Free Inspection Program for all related Innova and Fortuner vehicles, the company said.

This is the biggest recall of vehicles in the country, though TMV did not use the term ‘recall’ in all the released documents, but referred to it as “free inspection program” only.

The move came two weeks after the company first admitted to three flaws in Innova models. Then, TMV production director Tadashi Yoshida announced at a press meeting early this month that only 8,830 would need to be recalled for repair.

Last Friday, however, the number of faulty cars reached 65,703 units of both Fortuner and Innova models, even higher than the estimate of the engineer who reported the case to the public via local newspapers.

Earlier Le Van Tach, an engineer working for Toyota, had released documents revealing three glitches in Innova and Fortuner vehicles. He said that Toyota Vietnam had sold around 60,000 faulty vehicles in the country that may face balance issues since their screws are not tightened properly as instructed by the Japanese company.

Regarding the rear wheel brake cylinder pressure, the program applies for Innova J produced from January 19, 2010 to November 24, 2010. Toyota technicians will check the rear wheel brake cylinder pressure and adjust its setting if necessary.

Regarding the torque tightening of all bolts at the rear striker, the program applies for all Innova produced from December 26, 2005 to December 23, 2010 and all Fortuner produced from February 16, 2009 to December 23, 2010. And regarding the camber bolts, Toyota technicians will inspect and repair Innova J & G that have been produced between December 26, 2005 and October 13, 2006.

Before implementing the program, TMV has informed the Vietnam Register and other relating authorities of all preparations for the program.

An official of the Vietnam Register, a government body responsible for checking vehicle quality, said the recall, though not the first in Vietnam, would be the largest ever.

Do Huu Duc, deputy general director of the Vietnam Register, told the Daily on Friday the Register would look into the case carefully before making any decision.

Previously, the leading auto maker last Thursday also started their so-called Customer Satisfaction Campaign to fix 278 units of defective Camry car models of 3.5Q and 2.4G. The cars were produced from January 27 to March 24 this year.

In mid-2008, TMV and its dealers also sent a formal apology to the buyers of the brand-new Innova and Hiace vehicles equipped with the engines that had become rusted after being forgotten at a port in northern Vietnam for two years.

The incident made big headlines in the local media then and eroded the credibility of the company. Investigative media reported that the company had used 95 of the 96 rusted engines imported from Indonesia for new cars, with 90 of them for the Innova vehicles and five for the Hiace passenger minivans.

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