TORRANCE, CA – Toyota announced a recall of 52,000 2001-2003-MY Prius vehicles sold in the U.S. to replace the electric power steering pinion shaft attachment nuts. Toyota said if the steering wheel is repeatedly and “strongly turned” to the full-lock position, the nuts securing the pinion shaft in the steering gear box assembly can become loose. Over time a driver will notice it requires more effort to steer when making a left turn.
Toyota said its dealers will install improved nuts that secure the pinion shaft at no charge. The repair will take approximately 4 hours depending on the dealer’s schedule.
Toyota also announced a separate recall of a small number of Venza AWD (34 vehicles) and Sienna AWD (16 vehicles) models for an insufficiently heat treated front right-hand driveshaft, which could cause the driveshaft to break. Only 38 vehicles total are affected by this issue. All of these vehicles are MY-2011.
No other Toyota or Lexus vehicles are involved in these recalls and the driveshaft recall only involves vehicles in the U.S. and Canada.