Toyota has resumed production of its first electric vehicle, the bZ4x. According to Reuters, the company has resumed production of the electric crossover after correcting a flaw that could cause wheels to come loose during hard braking or sharp turns.
The company also stated that it fixed an unannounced flaw with poorly installed airbags that could fail or cause injuries.
The automaker stated that it addressed the wheel issue by replacing the hub bolts and ensuring that the new parts were properly tightened.
There was no word on when sales would resume in the United States, but Japanese customers can now lease the bZ4x (their only option for driving the car) beginning October 26th.
Subaru has also not stated how it will address American sales of its equivalent model, the Solterra, which had not yet reached US buyers before the defect was discovered.
The short-term financial impact of the fix was minimal. Toyota recalled only 2,700 vehicles worldwide, the vast majority of which were in Europe.
Even the buybacks and credits would be insignificant for a company that sold nearly 28,000 Camrys in the United States alone last month. This year, only 232 bZ4x models were sold in the United States.75751
The greater worry is the impact on Toyota’s reputation. The company has long been accused of being slow to embrace EVs, with only a third of annual sales expected by 2030, whereas many competitors expect more.
The recall only made matters worse by taking the recently released machine off the market for more than three months. Toyota still needs to demonstrate that it can build a successful EV, and the wheel flaw hasn’t helped.