Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) issued a recall for first-generation RAV4 units due to an airbag issue. These 1,157 affected units may have compromised phase-stabilized ammonium nitrate propellants, which is needed to ensure the safe activation of the vehicle’s airbags. The units that are covered under the recall are those that were bought from June 6, 1997, to August 17, 1999. The recall will entail the replacement of the driver’s side airbag.
The first generation models of the RAV4 are part of the growing list of vehicles that are affected by Takata airbag recall. While these units don’t exactly suffer from the same explosive and deadly airbag detonations, the airbags are still compromised. According to a Defect Information Report from Takata, they have found that the airbag inflators in the Japanese SUV can absorb moisture over time. The moisture can affect how the inflators detonate. The excess moisture can cause a delay in inflation or the rupture of the airbag in the event of a crash.
While the root cause of why moisture can accumulate in the airbag has not been found, TMP has issued the recall just to be safe. This was done in order to take preemptive action and to replace the old inflators with newer and safer models at no additional cost to the customer.
In preparation for the 1,157 recalled RAV4 units, the Japanese automaker is currently preparing the replacement parts for the airbag inflators. Toyota will immediately notify owners through an official notification letter once these parts are ready. Despite the fact that these vehicles are more than 20 years old its still a good move by the Japanese brand to ensure the safety of its customers. It is highly recommended that owners of these vehicles immediately contact their nearest Toyota dealership to schedule an appointment and to know more about the airbag recall.