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2023 sees the launch of a Toyota 4Runner 40th anniversary special edition in addition to a choice of popular SUV options. Launched in 1983 as a 1984 model, the 4Runner has become a bit of a legend. But it certainly isn’t without fault. While the automaker tells 2023 model owners to gear up for adventure with an “emphasis on safety,” seat belts are reportedly a safety issue. Another problem emerges in the form of backup cameras that display poor and/or distorted images that also impact safety.
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|Complaint Category||Number of Complaints|
|Unknown Or Other|
|Back Over Prevention|
|Back Over Prevention: Rearview System Braking|
Backover prevention problems related to poor backup camera display and issues with seat belts failing are the most common problems early owners of the 2023 Toyota 4Runner are complaining to the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) about. There is reportedly also a problem with unexplained windshield noises that drivers find distracting.
Several owners of the 2023 4Runner have complained to the NHTSA that there are issues with the vehicle’s back-up camera. For example, an owner from Oregon states that when the 4Runner mileage was only about 700, the camera “displayed a distorted screen” while the vehicle was shifted into reverse. There was no warning light and the dealer was unable to diagnose or repair the problem.
Another 2023 4Runner owner states that the poor image quality of the back-up camera “is an accident waiting to happen.” Describing this further, the complaint states that the image is “very grainy and sometimes (a) dark image makes it difficult to see what’s behind you when backing up. A small child or pet could easily be missed when backing up due to this poor image quality.”
This person maintains that prior model years of the 4Runner had a “noticeably better image quality.” But there is a complaint from the Hawaii owner of a 2022 model with only 20 miles on the clock. It states that the camera display is blurry when reversing the vehicle. We mention the complaint here because the dealer maintained “it was a normal characteristic of the vehicle.” Furthermore, the owner was told “to utilize the mirrors primarily as the cameras were used for secondary checks.” Clearly, it’s not an acceptable explanation!
A complaint about the 2023 Toyota 4Runner’s seat belts is also an issue reported to the NHTSA about the 2022 model. Additionally, as the 2023 complaint points out, the problem is very similar to a ”voluntary” safety recall issued for about 2,300 2022 Toyota Sienna vehicles in November 2021.
The 2023 complaint is from an owner in California. She describes how her parents weren’t able to retract their seatbelts after they had “jumped into the backseat” of her “brand new” 4Runner. “This was very arcane because I seldom have any backseat passengers, and I don’t load any heavy cargo into my car. Moreover, I went into my backseat and retracted the rear seatbelts, except for the middle backseat, slowly enough to expose the part of the belt webbing that was torn. On both sides of my rear seatbelts, the webbing of the belts is torn. This is perplexing because I never utilize my rear seatbelts.
Describing this as an “insidious problem,” she says the incident happened while parked in her driveway. But, the “safety and the safety of others were at risk because my capricious rear seat belts could have malfunctioned at any given moment.”
A registered nurse who works 12-hours shifts in a cardiac ICU, she was finding it difficult to arrange an appointment with the dealership. But, ultimately, she opted not to have her vehicle inspected because her local dealership “quoted me $175 for inspection and consultation, which I thought was an avaricious price.”
Her belief is that “the seat belts were manufactured with an incorrect component, which caused the seat belts to ‘bunch’ and eventually lead to the tearing of the seat belts’ webbing.”
An owner from New York has complained to the NHTSA about “very distracting” noises that the 2023 4Runner windshield makes. The complaint states that when the temperature drops the “windshield makes a loud snapping, metal on glass crunching/tapping sound.”
The dealership acknowledged the noise “and placed limited tape on the edge of the cowl lip facing the engine.” But the sound got louder, eventually drowning out the radio. The owner took the vehicle back to the dealership when the weather warmed up, but they “did not inspect the windshield seal or check for loose components under the cowl as suggested.”
If you think your 2023 Toyota 4Runner might be a lemon, Lemberg Law will be happy to assess your complaints free of charge. We have helped many vehicle owners with “lemons” get compensation and settlements from manufacturers. All you have to do is call our Helpline or fill out a contact form. It isn’t going to cost you anything because the law says Toyota must pay the legal bills for lemon law cases.
Who are we? We are Lemberg Law, a Consumer Law Firm
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