WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Toyota Motors announced a global recall Wednesday of 7.43 million cars due to a power window problem that poses a fire risk.
The recall will affect approximately 2.5 million vehicles in the United States.
Earl Stewart of Earl Stewart Toyota posted on his Facebook page today saying, "I sincerely apologize to my customers for the inconvenience this causes you. With that said, I applaud Toyota for proactively incurring such a large expense by issuing the worldwide recall of 7.43M vehicles and 2.5M in the USA. This is a VOLUNTARY recall, not ordered by the NHTSA. If you are driving one of these recalled vehicles, you will be contacted later this month by Toyota and you may schedule a service appointment with us, or your nearest Toyota dealer, to have the power window switch fixed."
Toyota said that the driver's side power window switch on some models may feel " notchy" or sticky during operation. The problem is caused by an uneven application of grease during the switch assembly process, and if commonly available lubricants are applied, a fire could result under some circumstances.
No accidents or deaths have resulted from the problem, the company said.
An additional 1.4 million units will be recalled in both Europe and China, while 500,000 units in the Middle East, 450,000 in Japan and 650,000 in Australia are also affected.
The global recall includes a variety of models across multiple years -- including some Highlander, Matrix, Tundra, Yaris, Corolla, Camry and RAV4 models. The company said it would inform U.S.-based owners of affected vehicles later this month by mail.
Toyota said the problem will be fixed by disassembling the switch and applying a special grease. The change will be performed at no cost to consumers.
The recall was announced shortly before markets closed in Japan. Toyota shares were down almost 2% on the day, falling to their lowest level since late July.
The recall is the company's largest since 2009 and 2010, when more than 8 million units were brought in for a potential problem involving sticky accelerator pedals. In that case, dealers were told to suspend sales of eight models, and production of those models stopped temporarily.
According to Toyota's U.S. website , the following vehicles are affected:
• 2007 to 2008 Yaris ( approx. 110,300)
• 2007 to 2009 RAV4 ( approx. 336,400)
• 2007 to 2009 Tundra ( approx. 337,100)
• 2007 to 2009 Camry ( approx. 938,100)
• 2007 to 2009 Camry Hybrid ( approx. 116,800)
• 2008 to 2009 Scion xD ( approx. 34,400)
• 2008 to 2009 Scion xA ( approx. 77,500)
• 2008 to 2009 Sequoia ( approx. 38,500)
• 2008 Highlander ( approx. 135,400)
• 2008 Highlander Hybrid ( approx. 23,200)
• 2009 Corolla ( approx. 270,900)
• 2009 Matrix ( approx. 53,800)
Toyota says owners will receive letters later this month.
For more information, click here .