Toyota is recalling over 12K electric bZ3 sedans in China

August 8, 2023

Toyota’s joint venture in China, FAW-Toyota, issued a recall plan for its electric sedan in China. The recall affects over 12,000 Toyota bZ3 models produced this year due to defective rear door handles.

Toyota revealed the bZ3 electric sedan last October as part of its plan to recapture market share in the region. The bZ3 is Toyota’s second fully electric car under its bZ, or Beyond Zero, lineup behind the global bZ4X.

The bZ3 is developed by BYD Toyota EV Technology, a joint venture between FAW-Toyota and BYD, China’s largest EV maker.

As such, the electric sedan features BYD’s Blade batteries, motor, and electric control system, boasting over 600 km (379 miles) of CLTC range. Meanwhile, it still rides on Toyota’s e-TNGA platform, which is used for the bZ4X, Lexus RZ 450e, and Subaru Solterra.

Despite this, the electric sedan’s interior is unique, featuring a digital island system, which integrates a large center screen into a tray-like console for a high-tech feel.

After the first bZ3 model rolled off the production line in early March, FAW-Toyota revealed it gathered over 5,000 orders on its first sales day.

Toyota issues recall for bZ3 electric sedan

Toyota launched the electric sedan in China on April 16, 2023, and is now recalling 12K units just over three months later.

As China-based news outlet Gasgoo reports, FAW-Toyota has filed for a recall plan with China’s State Administration for Market Regulation. The recall covers 12,205 bZ3 electric sedans produced between March 13 and July 5, 2023.

The automaker is recalling the electric sedans over defective rear doors that could cause them to open while driving or remain locked in extreme cases.

The shape and material of the design cause a gap between the outer door handle and the lock. Particularly in high humidity or temperatures, the lock may fail to, well, lock.

FAW-Toyota is replacing the rear door locks for free with additional gaskets to ensure proper safety. However, as an emergency precaution, owners of the affected vehicles are being asked to stop using them immediately and contact the nearest FAW-Toyota dealership for inspection.

The recall is set to begin next week, on July 27, 2023. The bZ3 electric sedan starts at 169,800 RMB ($24,680) for the base model with 517 km (321 miles) of range. Or, you can opt for the Long-range, which starts at 189,800 RMB ($27,587) with 616 km (382 miles) of range.

Toyota also slashed prices on its bZ4X electric SUV in China earlier this year to compete in the rapidly evolving Chinese EV market. Prices now start at less than 269,800 RMB ($25,000).

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Toyota is recalling over 12K electric bZ3 sedans in China