ImportantConsumer Reports wants Toyota to recall 178,000 vehicles due to problematic brakes on specific model years of Camry Hybrids. Toyota has already offered to repair the faulty brakes for free; however, the automaker has yet to issue a general recall relating to the defective brakes. A recall would cost Toyota millions of dollars and require it to contact the individual owners of the affected vehicles.

Brake Defects Affect 2007 to 2011 Camry Hybrid Model Years

The brake problems relate to 2007 through 2011 Camry Hybrid models. According to Consumer Reports, there is danger of the brake-fluid reservoir filters clogging up in these vehicles. In the event of a filter clog, drivers would be forced to apply immense pressure to their brakes in order to stop the vehicles. Another issue relates to the anti-lock braking systems, which are in danger of failing. If this occurs, drivers would also be required to apply immense pressure to their brakes in order to stop their vehicles.

According to Consumer Reports, because these defects have to do with the failure of important safety features and the ability to stop, Toyota should issue a recall of the vehicles. Nevertheless, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) seems to disagree. The safety defects were reviewed by the NHTSA and the regulator deemed that no recall was required. Instead of a recall, Toyota created a "service campaign" to fix the filter clog in affected vehicles for free. However, it will only be the Hybrid Camry owners who happen to stumble upon articles like this one, who will know that they have a potentially dangerous defect and the right to get it fixed without charge.

Toyota Believes Its Actions Are Appropriate

Toyota issued a statement in response to Consumer Reports' request for a recall to be issued. Toyota says it believes its actions are appropriate to address the issue and it is working with the NHTSA to complete the investigation into the problem.

Hybrid Camry drivers and passengers who have been injured in an accident involving these vehicles may wish to investigate the nature of how the crash occurred. If a problem with the vehicle's brakes led to the crash, these individuals may have recourse to pursue financial restitution in civil court via a product liability claim for their injuries.