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Toyota issues massive global recall over seatbelt issue

The global recall involves Toyota's RAV4 SUV model produced between July 2005 and August 2014.

A view of the service center at Bay Ridge Toyota in Brooklyn, New York, USA. Picture: EPA/Andrew Gombert

TOKYO - Toyota Motor Corp said on Thursday it is conducting a global recall of 2.87 million vehicles due to the possibility that their seatbelts could be damaged by a metal seat frame part in the event of a crash.

In an email, the world's biggest-selling automaker said that the global recall involved its RAV4 SUV model produced between July 2005 and August 2014 and sold worldwide, and its Vanguard SUV model produced between October 2005 and January 2016 and sold in Japan.

The recall includes 1.3 million vehicles in North America announced earlier in the day by Toyota's US unit, along with around 625,000 vehicles in Europe, 434,000 vehicles in China, 177,000 in Japan and 307,000 in other regions.

The automaker said it would add resin covers to the metal seat cushion frames on all affected vehicles to prevent any metal pieces from cutting the seatbelt in the event of a crash, after it had received two reports in which rear seatbelts separated following crashes.

Toyota said it could not determine whether these incidents were linked to any injuries or fatalities.

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