Recall Alert: 2002-2005 Lexus, Toyota and Pontiac Cars, Pickup Trucks, SUVs

2005ToyotaSequoiaRecall

Vehicles Affected: Nearly 250,000 model-year 2002-05 Lexus SC luxury coupes and Toyota Sequoia SUVs, and 2003-05 Tundra pickup trucks, Corolla sedans and Matrix hatchbacks, and Pontiac Vibe hatchbacks, all originally sold or currently registered in high-humidity areas of southern Florida, along the Gulf Coast, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, Saipan and American Samoa

The Problem: The front passenger airbag inflators are susceptible to rupture in a crash, necessitating the deployment of the front passenger airbag. The inflator could rupture, causing metal fragments to strike and seriously injure the passenger-seat occupant or others.

The Fix: Toyota will notify owners of Toyota and Lexus vehicles, and GM will notify owners of Pontiac vehicles. Dealers will replace the passenger-side airbag inflator for free. As an interim measure if a replacement is not available, the dealer will disable the front passenger airbag and advise owners not to use the front passenger seat until a replacement inflator is installed. Toyota will begin notifying owners around Oct. 25; GM has not yet announced a notification schedule.

What Owners Should Do: Owners of Toyota and Lexus vehicles can call Toyota at 800-331-4331, and owners of Pontiac Vibes can call GM at 800-521-7300. Owners can also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236, or go to www.safercar.gov, for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | October 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

Thieves Still Favor the Honda Accord

2013HondaAccord

As is often the case in these "most-stolen" lists, the vehicles that are most popular with those who buy cars are commensurately popular with those who steal them. Of the top 10 popularly pilfered vehicles on the Des Plaines, Ill.,-based National Insurance Crime Bureau's annual "Hot Wheels" list, seven are also mainstays among the nation's top 10 best-selling cars each month.

Related: What's the Most Affordable Car for 2014

Topping the list is the consistently beloved Honda Accord, with nearly 54,000 thefts in the 2013 counting period, followed by the Honda Civic (45,000) and full-size Chevrolet pickup trucks (28,000). Moreover, while No. 8 combines the Jeep Cherokee and Grand Cherokee into one listing, it should be noted that these are two entirely separate vehicles, one a crossover and the other a full-size SUV.

By Matt Schmitz | August 21, 2014 | Comments (1)

What's the Most Affordable Car in 2014?

2014MitsubishiMirage

Shoppers may face legitimate sticker shock when they're shopping for a new car. TV and radio advertisements may lead them to believe that new cars all get at least 35 mpg for less than $15,000, but the price of entry for even a modestly equipped new car is well above that.

Related: What's the Most Affordable Compact SUV for 2014?

That's why we've taken the cars with the lowest sticker prices and added a dose of reality. A vast majority of buyers never consider buying a car with a manual transmission (often the standard equipment on inexpensive new cars), so right out of the gate the car they're shopping for costs significantly more than they thought it would. Opting for an automatic transmission can cost $1,000 or more.

By David Thomas | July 21, 2014 | Comments (8)

Toyota and Ford Disagree (Again) Over Global Best-Seller Title

Focus_Corolla_2014_ES

The Toyota Corolla ended 2013 in ninth place on the U.S. sales ladder, eclipsed by a cadre of full-size Detroit pickup trucks and three popular family sedans — including Toyota's own Camry. But car shoppers across the world, where the streets aren't so Texas-sized, preferred the Corolla to every other car model in 2013.

$20,000 Compact Sedan Challenge

This is according to Toyota, citing registration data from analytics firm Polk. The automaker says the data, which captures 96 percent of new-car sales worldwide, indicated 1,098,524 Corolla registrations in 2013. That beat an April 9 proclamation by Ford that the Focus was 2013's global best-seller with 1,097,618 registrations. Ford, like Toyota, cited Polk data.
 
It would seem that Toyota won by a hair. But, as a certain former president might say, it depends how you define the terms.

By Kelsey Mays | April 23, 2014 | Comments (7)

Recall Alert: 2009-2010 Toyota Corolla, Matrix, Tacoma, 2008-2010 Toyota Highlander, 2006-2008 Toyota RAV4, 2006-2010 Toyota Yaris

2009ToyotaCorollaRecall

Vehicles Affected: Approximately 1.3 million Toyota vehicles including model-year 2009-2010 Corolla, 2009-2010 Matrix, 2009-2010 Tacoma, 2008-2010 Highlander, 2006-2008 RAV4 and 2006-2010 Yaris

The Problem: Electrical connections to a spiral cable assembly can be damaged when the steering wheel is turned. This could lead to the driver's airbag being deactivated, failing to deploy in a crash. If this damage occurs, an airbag warning light will illuminate in the instrument cluster.

The Fix: Dealers will replace the spiral cable assembly with an upgraded version.

What Owners Should Do: Toyota will notify owners by mail, but no date has been given for when the notices will be sent. Concerned owners can contact Toyota at 800-331-4331 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or visit www.safercar.gov for more info.

More Recalls

Manufacturer photo

By David Thomas | April 9, 2014 | Comments (8)

Toyota Recalls 1.8 Million Vehicles in U.S.

Update: Links to both U.S.-related recalls are listed below.

Original Post: Toyota is recalling 1.8 million cars, trucks and SUVs in the U.S. and 6.39 million globally over two separate issues.

The larger recall includes popular models like the Toyota Corolla, Highlander and RAV4 over a cable assembly that connects to the driver's airbag. If it fails the airbag might not deploy. This recall also involves the Pontiac Vibe, built alongside the Toyota Matrix, but is unrelated to GM's recent ignition switch recall.

A separate recall involves the Toyota Yaris and Scion xD and could lead to a driver's seat not staying in place during an accident.

You can read more about the recalls at USA Today and get full details on the U.S. models recalled at the links below.

Recall Alert: 2009-2010 Toyota Corolla, Matrix, Tacoma, 2008-2010 Toyota Highlander, 2006-2008 Toyota RAV4, 2006-2010 Toyota Yaris

Recall Alert: 2006-2010 Toyota Yaris, 2008-2010 Scion xD

By David Thomas | April 9, 2014 | Comments (0)

2013 Honda Civic Versus its Competitors

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Before Cars.com's $20,000 Compact Sedan Challenge in November 2013, we took a detailed look at how our long-term 2013 Honda Civic stacked up individually against the 2013 Nissan Sentra, 2013 Toyota Corolla (before the 2014 redesign) and 2014 Kia Forte.

Follow Our Long-Term Fleet

For 2013, the Civic gained notable improvements after a half-hearted 2012 redesign. Our yearlong goal with the Civic was to assess those changes against other compact sedans that entered our rotating fleet of manufacturer-provided test cars. Below, see how well the updated Civic performed head-to-head against three of those competitors in the following categories: cabin quality, noise, handling, acceleration, braking, ride, gas mileage, seats and roominess, and multimedia usability.

By Joe Bruzek | March 4, 2014 | Comments (8)

Winter Weather Impacts Auto Production Worldwide

SnowedInCar

The severe weather that has made drivers' commutes miserable for much of this winter across much of the U.S. is also affecting global and domestic auto production. Production was expected to resume Tuesday at most Toyota and Honda factories shut down after a major snowstorm in Japan disrupted shipments from parts suppliers.

How to Safely Remove Snow and Ice From Your Car

According to the Detroit News, Toyota stopped production Monday at its Takaoka plant, which builds cars including the Corolla and iQ (sold in the U.S. under the Scion brand); the Tsutsumi factory that makes the Prius and Camry; and plants in Motomachi and Tahara. All facilities but Tsutsumi were expected to resume production Tuesday. Honda, meanwhile, suspended work at its Yorii factory near Tokyo after snow affected output Feb. 14 and 15, the Detroit News reported.

By Matt Schmitz | February 18, 2014 | Comments (0)

Redesigned 2014 Toyota Corolla Adds Extra Room, Family Appeal

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Many smaller families may be quick to dismiss the Toyota Corolla as a viable option for carting around their crew, but a redesign for 2014 means big changes. The Corolla's wheelbase grew nearly 4 inches to 106.3 inches. What that means for families is a lot more legroom for growing tweens and visiting grandparents, and more generous quarters for rear-facing child-safety seats, too.

2014 Toyota Corolla Video

It's limiting to only consider crossovers and minivans as potential family haulers. A few years ago my husband and I were looking to reduce our car payment and fuel costs as well as comfortably transport our young daughter. We ended up letting go of our SUV and purchasing a 2012 Volkswagen Jetta, which at the time had the largest backseat in the compact sedan class. However, now that the all-new Corolla has arrived, that title goes to this new Toyota.

By Carrie Kim | February 10, 2014 | Comments (3)

2014 Toyota Corolla Joins NHTSA Five-Star Safety Club

2014ToyotaCorolla

After scoring poorly earlier this year in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's stringent small overlap frontal crash test, the 2014 Toyota Corolla received a bit of redemption from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The agency today announced that the redesigned-for-2014 compact sedan earned its five-star overall safety designation, receiving individual scores of five stars in both frontal- and side-impact crashes and a score of four stars in the rollover test.

In October, IIHS announced that the 2014 Corolla had scored marginal in its small overlap crash test, which is only one step up from poor — the lowest rating — preventing the car from earning the institute's Top Safety Pick Plus credentials. The small overlap test simulates a car striking an object such as a tree or light pole at 40 mph. The Corolla earned good ratings in IIHS' other four tests and was named a Top Safety Pick (a step down from Plus designation), falling behind competitors including the Dodge Dart, Ford Focus, Honda Civic and Hyundai Elantra sedan.

Related
2014 Toyota Corolla Scores Poorly on New Crash Test
2014 Toyota Corolla Cars.com Review
More Safety News on Cars.com

By Matt Schmitz | December 16, 2013 | Comments (1)

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