Consumer Reports is calling on Toyota to issue an official recall of 178,000 Camry Hybrid sedans from model years 2007 to 2011, claiming that a pair of issues affecting the brakes are so dire they demand a more official action than what the company has undertaken so far.

The first issue, as CR tells it, relates to a clog in the brake-fluid reservoir filter, which if left untreated could lead to a number of dashboard warning lights. The "front brake assist could be temporarily lost," too, according to Toyota's own notice to dealers and owners of affected models. The company has issued a "service campaign" that will fit a new brake-fluid reservoir free of charge to any affected model brought to a dealer by June 30, 2017.

The other issue plaguing the fuel-sipping Camrys is being treated via a warranty extension, and focuses on the ABS brake actuator, a particularly expensive (both in terms of parts, at $1,000, and labor, around $3,000) item that is necessary for the anti-lock braking to function. There's also a related issue with the brake pedal's "stroke sensor," which like the actuator can lead to a very difficult-to-depress brake pedal. The warranty extension increases the coverage of the actuator to 10 years or 150,000 miles (whichever comes first).

While both the service campaign and the warranty extension were prompted by a number of complaints and an investigation from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, only the 2007 and 2008 models were investigated. Toyota broadened the scope of the issues, including 2009 to 2011 models, when it announced the service campaign and warranty extension. Despite the company's actions, CR claims that as of this writing, the 2007 and 2008 Camry Hybrids have still managed to rack up 269 complaints, with 14 reported crashes and five injuries.

CR ends its bit, arguing that the nature of these issues and the effects they can have on the way a vehicle behaves warrant an even greater action, saying:

"We think Toyota's proper action would be a recall. Greatly diminished brake function is a serious safety concern. A recall is more comprehensive and widely published than a mere service campaign, and owners don't have to wait for a problem to happen before qualifying for the repair. Besides that, unlike extended warranties, recalls don't expire and are performed proactively."

Thoughts? If NHTSA didn't demand a recall, do you still think the issues are dire enough to demand one? Could (or should) Toyota satisfy CR's demands by stepping up the information campaign regarding the warranty extension and service campaign? Have your say in Comments.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 17 Comments
      Avinash Machado
      • 4 Months Ago
      Maybe they should recall.
      Larry Litmanen
      • 4 Months Ago
      Can we direct money away from federal agencies to CR, they seem to do a much better job than some government tool with an agenda ala Louis Lerner.
        normc32
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Larry Litmanen
        Consumer Reports takes subscribers money, what is the difference?
          superlightv12
          • 4 Months Ago
          @normc32
          They get to choose? I don't get to choose how much I pay in taxes and what I get for my money. CR is an absolute bargain compared to government.
          normc32
          • 4 Months Ago
          @normc32
          @superlight: you choose at the voting booth.
      eric
      • 4 Months Ago
      http://static.cargurus.com/images/site/2008/05/31/22/27/2007_toyota_camry-pic-24685.jpeg Fixed it.
      normc32
      • 4 Months Ago
      Toyota has a computer capacity problem. http://www.safetyresearch.net/blog/articles/toyota-unintended-acceleration-and-big-bowl-%E2%80%9Cspaghetti%E2%80%9D-code There are no failsafes in their software and they are running out of capacity.
        normc32
        • 4 Months Ago
        @normc32
        http://www.safetyresearch.net/blog/articles/toyota-unintended-acceleration-and-big-bowl-%E2%80%9Cspaghetti%E2%80%9D-code
          kontroll
          • 4 Months Ago
          @normc32
          it is interesting to see the toyota owner trash downvoting you when you provide probably the best evidence of this POS car and manufacturer. These people who down voted you are the scum of he earth, who instead of being glad that there are people out there pointing out overwhelming evidence to the garbage called toyota, they downvote you. ..what sum bags
          normc32
          • 4 Months Ago
          @normc32
          Kontroll gets "Post of the Day".
      normc32
      • 4 Months Ago
      Carry owners use the brakes? They drive so slow.
      Levine Levine
      • 4 Months Ago
      Further proof that Toyota has been cutting too any corners. It is time to stay away from Toyota until the company repent.
      Liuping
      • 4 Months Ago

      We had to pay over $3000 to get the  ABS brake actuator a few months ago. Toyota acted like they never saw the issue before, and we had to take it in 3 times, before they finally replaced the actuator (at our cost).


      On three separate occasions the dashboard lit up like a Christmas tree with ABS warnings, and the power brakes failed while on the highway. Each time I took it to the dealer and they said there was nothing in the log or system about the failure. so they could not fix the problem. They actually did not even believe me that it happened at one point. Incredible. I will never buy another Toyota as long as I live.

      eric
      • 4 Months Ago
      This Camry is Not That Old. How is it that after a couple of years on, stock photos emerge that make it look like it was shot on film from the 80's?
      Christopher Cuff
      • 4 Months Ago
      At about 100 dollars an hour for dealer service labor costs, no brake system repair on a car less than 6 figures should take 30 hours to repair. Wonder where those numbers came from.
        superlightv12
        • 4 Months Ago
        @Christopher Cuff
        The mechanics usually hate doing recall work because the are paid based on the estimate of time to do the repair. When it is warranty work or recall work, the time is almost always underestimated. I'm sure the dealers also don't get $100 hour from the manufacturer. It's probably a base amount that isn't enough.
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