Toyota Highlander and Sienna, Lexus RX330 Recalled for Power Steering Failure
Toyota and Lexus are recalling approximately 420,200 vehicles equipped with V-6 engines to address a potential failure of the power-steering system. Among the vehicles affected are the 2004-2005 Toyota Highlander, 2004-2005 Toyota Sienna, 2004-2005 Lexus RX330, and the 2006 RX400h.
The Problem: Part of the engine's crankshaft pulley may become misaligned, which could cause a warning light to illuminate inside the car. In severe cases, this would cause the power-steering accessory belt to fall off, leading to a failure of the power steering system. Although Toyota hasn't received any reports of injuries resulting from this problem, the company cautions the condition could result in "a sudden increase in steering effort."
The Fix: Toyota doesn't currently have enough parts to fix the problem, but is working on obtaining an adequate supply of replacements. The company is working to obtain enough replacement parts, and then will notify owners of the recall action in early 2012. Toyota plans to inspect and, possibly, replace the crankshaft pulley.
Number of Vehicles Potentially Affected: 283,200 Toyota vehicles and 137,000 Lexus vehicles