Toyota Recalls Avalon Sedans

Toyota is recalling 373,000 Avalons and 39,000 Lexus LX 470s for steering problems. Do the recalls ever end for Toyota? USA Today has more:

In a statement on its web site, the automaker said problems with the Avalon’s steering lock bar could lead to a tiny crack on the surface of the bar. Over time, the crack may get bigger, eventually resulting in a broken bar. When that happens, it becomes difficult to unlock the steering wheel when the car is not moving.

Even more worrisome: If drivers are steering toward the right “with sufficient lateral acceleration” (which we think means turning fast), a broken and loose lock bar could interfere with steering, causing the steering wheel to lock.

In the Lexus vehicles, the automaker says a snap ring on the shaft may disengage when the vehicle experiences an unusually severe impact to the front wheels, such as striking a deep pothole. If that happens and the steering wheel is then repeatedly turned to the full locked position, the steering shaft may disengage over time.

The Toyota Avalons in question are model year 2000 to 2004, and the LX 470s are model year 2003 to 2007.

Find more details at Toyota.com/recall.