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TORRANCE, CALIFORNIA — Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corp. on Wednesday announced it is recalling more than 7.4 million vehicles worldwide over a faulty power-window switch which could lead to smoke or fire under some circumstances, but no injuries have been reported.
The company said the faulty power-window switch was caused by an uneven application of the grease during the switch assembly process at the supplier. If the grease is not applied evenly, frequent use of the switch and normal operation may cause the grease to become carbonized and may eventually result in the deterioration of its lubricating properties.
As a result, the driver's side Power Window Master Switch (PWMS), which controls the windows for the driver and passengers, may experience a "notchy" or sticky feel during operation. If lubricants are applied to the switch in an attempt to address this issue, melting of the switch assembly or smoke could occur and lead to a fire under some circumstances.
The voluntary recall affects about a dozen models built between early 2006 and late 2010, according to Toyota officials. Among them are certain Yaris, RAV4, Tundra, Camry, Camry Hybrid, Scion xD, Scion xB, Sequoia, Highlander, Highlander Hybrid, Corolla and Matrix vehicles.
The recall includes approximately 2.5 million vehicles in the United States, 1.39 million vehicles in Europe, 8,700 vehicles in India, 460,000 vehicles in Japan, 21,145 vehicles in New Zealand, 297,931 vehicles in Australia, and 239,459 vehicles in Canada. A number of cases have been reported in multiple countries, but there have been no reports of accidents, injuries or deaths.
Owners of vehicles covered by Wednesday's safety recall will receive a letter during the next few months. Their vehicles will receive an inspection, switch disassembly, and special fluorine grease will be applied to fix the problem. This should take approximately one hour to complete, depending on the dealer's work schedule.