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Honda Recall: 470,000 Vehicles Suffer Brake Problems

A day after Toyota issued a recall for a possible brake fluid leak, Honda Motor Corp. is is recalling 470,000 Acura sedans and Honda Odyssey minivans for the same problem. Honda announced in a statement that that the Honda recall also will involve leaking brake fluid from a seal on the brake master cylinder. The Detroit News reported earlier that Honda and Toyota share the same Japanese supplier for the affected part.

Toyota's recall yesterday involved 1.5 million vehicles globally and 740,000 in the United States. Toyota previously had recalled 8.5 million vehicles worldwide for problems connected with sudden acceleration (See our Toyota's Travails gallery). Honda's recall will affect 2005 to 2007 models of the Honda Odyssey minivan (pictured at right) and the Acura RL sedan.

This latest recall shows that Toyota and other companies are now moving quickly to announce any safety problems after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration fined Toyota $16.5 million for failing to report a defect it knew about. "Toyota and other auto makers are getting out in front of quality issues with recalls earlier in the process, not wanting to be accused of foot-dragging again," says Michelle Krebs, senior analyst for Edmunds.com.

Toyota and Honda are both indicating that the leaking brake master cylinder seal is occurring when the original type of brake fluid is not used. The both say that a brake warning light would come on in the case of such a leak before any braking capability was lost. But they added that if the warning light does come on, owners should go to a dealer for repair immediately.

Photo courtesy of Honda Motor Corp.

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