Both EVs are recalled due to a problem with wheels falling off
Engineers didn’t take into account the additional weight and torque of the electric drivetrain
A washer will be added between the wheel and the bolts that hold it in place
Toyota has finally found a fix that will allow it to resume production of the BZ4X and Subaru Solterra electric SUVs, which had stopped back in June.
Earlier this year, Toyota received three complaints about a BZ4X that lost one of its wheels while driving, two of which were in the United States.
This prompted the automaker to stop the sales of this model and the almost identical Subaru Solterra until the cause of this unusual problem was found.
Over the last three months, the automaker has been working to determine the cause and find a way to remedy the problem, which it now seems to have done.
According to the company, its engineers failed to account for the higher torque and weight of the electric powertrain when specifying the wheel fasteners, which led to the hub bolts coming loose when turning and braking aggressively.
In addition, variances in the finish of the wheels exacerbated the problem by making it easier for the bolts to back off.
To fix this, Toyota and Subaru will install a washer between the wheel and the bolts, in addition to increasing the friction of the wheel surface to better hold the bolts in place.
Toyota says around 2,700 units of the BZ4X are affected around the world, with an additional 1,600 units of the Solterra. Fortunately, most of these vehicles have yet to be delivered.
Production of both vehicles resumed today at Toyota’s Motomachi factory and the upcoming introduction of the related Lexus RZ is back on track for the early months of 2023.