Toyota recalls over 25k EVs due to inaccurate battery estimates

Chinese joint venture FAW Toyota is issuing its second major recall on the bZ3 EV in eight months since it hit the market overseas. The company’s latest filing pertains to over 25,000 electric sedans built this year, some of which present incorrect estimates of remaining battery capacity, some even losing complete power without warning.

FAW-Toyota is a joint venture founded in 2000 to develop and manufacture Toyota-branded vehicles for the Chinese market. Regarding electrification, the JV currently assembles two EVs under Toyota’s “Beyond Zero” (Bz) line: The bZ4X SUV and the bZ3 sedan.

Toyota’s first bZ EV model saw its own recall woes, but the bZ3 was built thereafter with the help of veteran Chinese OEM Build Your Dreams (BYD).

The bZ3 debuted in October 2022 before commencing production in China in early March 2023. By April, FAW-Toyota began initial sales in the market, but by July, saw its first recall of the EVs.

Over 12,000 bZ3s were affected by the recall, which pertained to defective door handles installed on the EVs. The number of Toyota sedans on roads in China has more than doubled since, so this second recall involves an even larger group of potentially affected EVs.

Source: Toyota

Toyota issues second recall on bZ3 EVs in five months

According to an announcement on China’s State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) website, FAW-Toyota has issued a recall on 25,815 bZ3 EVs, effectively immediately.

The recall cites improper programming of the vehicle’s battery management controller, which can cause remaining power estimates in some EVs to excessively deviate from the actual range remaining.

This deviation specifically affects Toyota EVs that have not been fully charged during multiple sessions consecutively and are driven at high speeds.

In addition to inaccurate remaining battery estimates on the vehicle’s displays, Toyota’s filing states that the EV will lose power entirely without any low-charge warnings in extreme cases.

FAW-Toyota says it plans to upgrade the control program of the battery management controller in every bZ3 EV affected by the recall via an over-the-air (OTA) update. Free of charge, of course.

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