Toyota Recalls 1.53 Million Cars

Toyota just can’t seem to catch a break.

Toyota today announced a voluntary recall of 1.53 million Lexus, Avalon, Highlander models worldwide to repair brake-fluid leaking from the master cylinder and causing brakes to gradually feel spongier.

In the US, the recalled models are the 2005 through 2006 Avalon, 2004 through 2006 Highlander (non Hybrid) and Lexus RX330, and 2006 Lexus GS300, IS250, and IS350.

Toyota will mail affected car owners in November who can then go to a local Toyota or Lexus dealer to have the brake master cylinder cup replaced for free.

More info is at or Toyota owners can also call 1-800-331-4331. Lexus owners can call 1-800-25 LEXUS.

Toyota Announces Intent to Voluntarily Recall Certain Toyota Avalon and Highlander, and Lexus GS300, IS250, and IS350 Vehicles to Replace a Brake Master Cylinder Seal [Toyota]

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  1. Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

    Kudos to Toyota for stepping up and fixing the problems on their sub-standard quality control high end cars. Just glad that I when I had the choice between the Yugo and the Lexus Highlander…I picked the Yugo…dodged the bullet on that one.

    • Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

      boy I wish there was an edit button…

      *Lexus and the Highlander…

    • Tank Fuzzbutt says:

      You are correct. I’m soooo glad I bought a GM. I can’t wait to drive it once it gets out of the repair shop for the umpteenth time.

  2. bonzombiekitty says:

    I don’t think it’s so much that they “can’t catch a break”. It’s probably more that for the next couple years they’re going to be doing recalls on every little thing that most car companies wouldn’t do a recall on.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      Yeah, little things like brake fluid leakage and sudden acceleration.

  3. ElizabethD says:

    Why should they “catch a break”? I’m glad they are doing the recalls and fixing problems, though.

    Still: Love my Hyunda Tucson. (My third Hyundai.) And this is coming from a former Toyota and Subaru owner for decades.

  4. Brunette Bookworm says:

    Honestly, EVERY car company has recalls on their cars. Think about how many parts are in a car and how many things could go wrong with them. Even a company who is Six Sigma and has achieved a defect rate of 3.4 per million opportunities is going to have recalls because that measure of opportunities is not per car but per every little thing that could go wrong on the car. Toyota, unfortunately, had a very publicized recall of a problem that ended up killing people. Toyota also has the added problem of being looked to as a leader in quality before this so when they have a quality problem, their bad press is more negative and more damaging than if it was a quality problem with, say, a product from Ford or GM.

  5. microcars says:

    Remember the floor mat recall?

    I took my truck in for an oil change and had them do “the floor mat recall”.
    I asked them if they had the parts for it in stock.
    “Oh yes” said the service manager “we’re ready for those”.
    I thought maybe I would get some new floor mats! sweet.

    Turns out it involved them looking at the floor mat and ensuring that it was attached with the existing clips. That’s it. That was the big recall that made the news.

    • The cake is a lie! says:

      That’s because there wasn’t anything wrong with the floor mats. The floor mats in the car that went off the cliff didn’t even belong to that car and the gas pedal got stuck in it. It was actually the gas pedal that had the problem and they did a fix on that. The problem with the floor mats was if they slid forward then there was a chance the pedals could get caught in them. So making sure the hook worked is pretty much the best they could do to fix the problem.

    • DieBretter says:

      10-2Graphics is right.

      Though, sometimes cars get recalled for the most mundane of reasons. One of them that pops into my head is one of the domestic manufacturers had a recall because there was either a typo in the manual or there was missing information. Another time there was a recall because the cars were missing the sticker on the sun visor regarding the airbag.

  6. sir_eccles says:

    Weird how those daily reports of people pressing the wrong pedal err I mean unintended acceleration just stopped.

  7. mcmunchkin says:

    Does anyone have an article about what happened within the company in the last few years? I have a 2001 Toyota, and it has been flawless for 120K miles. None of the bad news is ever about older Toyotas.

    • microcars says:

      there is a rather large recall for 2000-2003 1st generation Toyota Tundra pickups with frames that are prematurely rusting.
      I used to have a 1996 Toyota truck that had a safety recall on it even after 10 years and 160K miles. Most of these are voluntary and silent recalls and don’t make the news. I think it just seems like a big deal lately because the “news” is all over Toyota any time they recall anything for any reason.
      The interweb was not so news hungry 10 years ago.

      • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

        I used to be a very loyal Toyota customer but finally gave up in the past few years.

        I had to deal with the consequences of Toyota frame rot. Within about two years of ownership, the frame of my Tundra was so rusted out that it wouldn’t pass a state inspection. After fighting with Toyota, they agreed to replace the frame (I wanted them to give me a new truck). The new frame didn’t rust but the truck had an entire laundry list of problems after the major surgery. My company also had a fleet of four Tundras and every single one of them had major rust problems.

        My corporate car was a Prius, which replaced my Matrix. I really liked the Prius until it developed one electrical problem after the next. I don’t know what happened to Toyota but I will never consider one of their vehicles again.

  8. Arcaeris says:

    More like “can’t catch a ‘brake,'” am I right?

  9. tanyamel says:

    Question for a more knowledgable than me crowd: My Mom has a 2005 Highlander that she just spent $1200 on to replace the brakes (and going back a second time since the problem remained). Her original complaints were the spongy issue, along with them seeming to fade. In addition to getting it fixed under the recall, does she have any recourse to get reimbursed on the money she already paid trying to get them fixed before this notice went out?

  10. EMike says:

    Way to make fun of Toyota for their quality issues by using a photo of a Toyota vehicle that is not part of the recall. (photo is, at the oldest, a 2008 highlander) the way, Chrysler announced a recall yesterday because of fire risk. I will anxiously await your story and a photo of a burning plymouth.

  11. TPA says:

    Let’s be honest here — cars today are rushed to production. Even Bentley had a recall this year. This was discussed around the water cooler today. What does vary between manufacturers is how quickly and how well problems are handled.

    From the office water cooler poll:
    Bentley: Outstanding (as expected)
    Mercedes: Very good
    Toyota: Very good (when they finally fess up to it)
    Infiniti: Dealership: excellent, manufacturer: poor. Dealers are fully aware of what problems are chronic to their cars. Getting Infiniti/Nissan to cover it sometimes means getting NHTSA involved.
    Chrysler: Dealership: Sucks. Manufacturer: can’t judge — the dealership hasn’t been able to work on the car in 3+ weeks (overbooked)

  12. TasteyCat says:

    Still not me.

    I await the inevitable, though. They’re erring on the side of caution, excessively so it seems. Out of fear of being accused of not reacting again, they’re instead going overboard and recalling everything.

  13. gman863 says:

    Speaking of Toyota, the cause of the “Sudden Impact” Camry situation has yet to be fully explained.

    Although Toyota did a dog-and-pony show with a (likely well reimbursed) “expert” panel of university geeks claiming software could not cause sudden acceleration, I have seen no media followup stories on if the gas pedal recall actually solved the problem. Have any Camrys fixed since the recalls resulted in white crosses and flowers being placed along the side of the road?

    Toyota has gone from fabulous to FAIL in a few short years. It will be several more until I even remotely consider purchasing one.