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Toyota recalls 151 Prado SUVs in RP for skidding problems

April 22, 2010 10:40am
One hundred fifty-one Land Cruiser Prado sports utility vehicles (SUV) sold here since late last year are affected by the global recall of about 21,000 units due to skidding problems encountered in high-speed driving, a Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. official said on Wednesday.

Owners are advised to contact the local arm of the Japanese automotive firm to arrange for a free reprogramming of their units’ "vehicle stability control" program, the company said in a statement late on Monday.

The development came after more than 20 Toyota Prius hybrids in the Philippines were recalled in February to address faulty brakes.

This time, it is the Land Cruiser Prado with 18-inch wheels and fitted with the kinetic dynamic suspension system that is up for a "special service campaign," Toyota Philippines said.

The model’s control program needs to be updated or the vehicle could slide sideways when a driver sharply turns the steering wheel in high-speed conditions, Toyota Philippines said.

"[Toyota Philippines] has started contacting its Land Cruiser Prado customers and will perform home service repair at no cost to the customers. Customers may also contact [the Toyota Philippines] customer assistance hotline," it said.

Forty-eight of the units sold here in 2009 and 103 that have entered the market so far this year need to be serviced, a spokesman said in a text message yesterday.

The 2009 figure accounted for 0.1 percent of the firm’s total sales that year. The 2010 figure, meanwhile, was 0.8 percent of Toyota Philippines’ first-quarter sales.

Aside from the recall of left-hand drive variants of the Land Cruiser Prado, Toyota headquarters earlier announced faulty vehicle stability controls were found in 13,000 units of the Lexus GX 460 sold in the US, Russia and Oman, among other markets.

But Toyota Philippines clarified that "no other Toyota or Lexus vehicles are affected by this recall in the Philippines." Toyota Philippines has sold 12,341 units of various models in the first quarter, up by more than a quarter, industry data showed. — Jessica Anne D. Hermosa, BusinessWorld