Toyota Says Lexus Vehicles Need Computer Reboot at Dealer

  • Problem can disable navigation system and radio, company says
  • Automaker says that 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser is also affected

Toyota Motor Corp. asked owners of its 2014-2016 Lexus luxury vehicles in the U.S. to go to dealerships to fix a computer issue that can disable navigation, audio and climate control systems.

The action also includes 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser sport utility vehicles, company spokeswoman Cindy Knight said Wednesday in an e-mail. The microcomputer that runs several electronic functions can be disabled by data broadcast via high-definition radio by a weather and traffic service provider, she said, without identifying that supplier. Knight said Toyota doesn’t know yet how many vehicles or what regions are affected.

Some Lexus owners in the Chicago area and the southern U.S. complained to the company Tuesday about the computer issue and customers in California said on Twitter that they also were affected. A posting on YouTube showed the navigation system on a Lexus RX350 SUV starting up, then going to a blank purple screen and restarting.

Knight said that in some situations, the faulty data can cause the center display in the dashboard to stop and then restart repeatedly.

Toyota stopped the broadcasting of the defective data Tuesday night, Knight said. For vehicles which already have the data, the affected computer must undergo a forced reset, she said.

Several owners posted on Twitter that they were able to reset the screens by removing the cable from the car battery’s negative terminal while the vehicle was off and then waiting about 30 seconds before reattaching the wiring.

Lexus had the highest ranking of any brand in an annual vehicle dependability study released by J.D. Power & Associates in February. But problems with infotainment, navigation and in-vehicle communication systems were rising and accounted for 20 percent of all customer complaints, J.D. Power said.

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