Recall Watch: Toyota Recalls 870,000 Sienna Minivans
By Chris Haak
News hit the wire tonight that Toyota is recalling some 600,000 two wheel drive Sienna minivans in the US and another 270,000 in Canada, covering model years 1998 to 2010, to address a risk that potential corrosion from long-term exposure to road salt in cold-weather states could cause the spare tire carrier cable to fail, which could cause the spare tire to fall from the vehicle. If the van is stopped when this happens, it’s not a big deal, but if it’s moving, it is a huge problem, particularly for the poor sap behind the Sienna when the cable fails.
In addition to the District of Columbia, vehicles originally sold or currently registered in the following cold climate states with high road salt usage are covered by this recall: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin and West Virginia. Owners of vehicles who live in unaffected states may still have their Sienna inspected free of charge. The inspection is expected to take about 30 minutes to complete.
Toyota has not yet developed a remedy for the problem, but in the meantime, owners of affected vehicles will receive a notice in the mail, and will be asked to take their vans to a Toyota dealer so the spare tire carrier cable can be inspected.
All wheel drive Siennas (sold during the 2004 through 2010 model years) are not recalled because they have run-flat tires and no spare tire.
With the addition of the Sienna to the recall list, every Toyota model except for the Land Cruiser, Yaris, 4Runner, FJ Cruiser, and Camry Solara has been recalled in the past several months. It also brings the total number of recalled vehicles to a cumulative total of more than 9.3 million.
For more information, Toyota has prepared a Customer FAQs sheet, available here.