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Toyota's China bZ3 electric sedan recall highlights widespread problem EVs and modern vehicle designs

Toyota's bZ3 door handle recall is indicative of a widespread issue relating to electric vehicles. (Image source: Toyota)
Toyota's bZ3 door handle recall is indicative of a widespread issue relating to electric vehicles. (Image source: Toyota)
Toyota has announced that it will be recalling over 12,000 of its bZ3 sedans in China that it built in cooperation with BYD. The reason for the recall comes down to faulty rear door handles that occasionally stop working or, even worse, randomly open while driving. The issue is so severe that Toyota has asked owners to immediately stop driving the vehicles, citing safety concerns.

Just three months after the Chinese launch of FAW-Toyota's bZ3 EV designed and manufactured in collaboration with BYD, the company has had to recall over 12,000 of the electric sedans due to faulty door handles. Some owners, as well as FAW-Toyota have discovered that the rear door handles occasionally fail, resulting in a door that opens while driving or refuses to open entirely.

FAW-Toyota claims that the issue is caused by moisture ingress into the latch that causes it to fail to lock or open properly. Videos of the door handles in action seem to show that the control mechanism is completely electronic, as a motor can be heard unlocking a latch when the handle is operated. To address the issue, the company will replace the handles of the 12,205 affected units and add extra gaskets to make sure that the handle and latch are properly sealed.

Recent studies have shown a consistent decrease in new-vehicle-buyer satisfaction with the execution of technology in modern vehicles over the years. The main culprits for this dissatisfaction are infotainment systems, in-vehicle apps, and interior and exterior design. The shift to electric vehicles has resulted in many manufacturers pushing high-tech features and hardware to their vehicles, which seems to be causing some discontent among owners.

Alongside modern-vehicle owner frustrations, electric vehicles have been shown to suffer from more recalls than their traditional, ICE-powered counterparts. For its part, Toyota has already had to recall its other all-electric crossover SUV, the b4ZX, due to a defect that could result in the wheels literally falling off the car.

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> Expert Reviews and News on Laptops, Smartphones and Tech Innovations > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2023 07 > Toyota's China bZ3 electric sedan recall highlights widespread problem EVs and modern vehicle designs
Julian van der Merwe, 2023-07-21 (Update: 2023-07-21)