Aisin Seiki is among suppliers involved in Toyota's recalls, report says

TOKYO (Bloomberg) -- Aisin Seiki Co. is among suppliers involved in Toyota Motor Corp.’s recall of more than 6 million vehicles, a person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg.

The Toyota-affiliated supplier made the seat rails involved in the April 9 recall and will discuss the costs with Toyota, the person said, asking not to be identified because the discussions are private.

Aisin Seiki can’t comment about the recalls before the company announces its earnings later this month, spokesman Masayuki Toyama said. Toyota owned about 22 percent of Aisin Seiki's stock as of last year.

Toyota this week called back 6.4 million vehicles, one of the biggest recall announcements in automotive history, after finding five types of safety hazards in its vehicles. Among them, 2.3 million vehicles were recalled because of faulty rails that may lead seats to move in the event of a crash.

“These quality related costs are to be shared with Toyota’s suppliers after confirming design responsibilities,” Kei Nihonyanagi, an analyst at Bank of America Corp.’s Merrill Lynch, said in a report Thursday.

He cut his investment rating on Toyota and estimated that costs related to the recall may reduce the carmaker’s quarterly profit by about 70 billion yen ($688 million).

Toyota spokeswoman Shino Yamada said the company doesn’t comment on suppliers.

Toyota Boshoku Corp. assembled the seats for models affected by the recall, spokesman Makoto Yoshii said today by phone, declining to comment on any financial toll. Tokai Rika Co., which counts Toyota as its biggest customer, said today it set aside 5.5 billion yen ($54 million) in provisions for costs related to a recall announced by a client, without identifying the customer.

Spokesmen at Toyoda Gosei Co. and Sumitomo Electric Industries Ltd. said their components weren’t involved in Toyota’s recall. Sadayoshi Yokoyama, a spokesman at No. 1 Toyota supplier Denso Corp., declined to comment on whether its parts were involved.

The recall this week was Toyota’s second-biggest ever, trailing only the 7.43 million vehicles it called back in October 2012 to fix power-window switches on models including its Camry and Corolla cars.

Cables to airbags

The models affected by the seat rail portion of Toyota’s recall this week were built from January 2005 through August 2010. The vehicles were the Ist, Vitz, Belta and Ractis in Japan, and Scion xD, Urban Cruiser and Yaris in other markets.

Toyota also said it was calling back about 3.5 million vehicles to replace spiral cables that may prevent driver’s-side airbags from deploying. The models recalled for this problem include RAV4, Corolla, Yaris, Highlander, Tacoma and Camry that were produced from April 2004 to December 2010.

Toyota also said it will fix noisy and potentially unstable steering column brackets on about 760,000 vehicles globally. The remaining safety campaigns are to replace windshield wiper motors of about 160,000 Ractis vehicles in Japan and the engine starters of about 20,000 vehicles in Japan and Hong Kong.

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