Before the differential seizes, drivers would likely hear a noise from it.
Toyota has issued a recall for 228,000 units of the 2016 and 2017 Tacoma in the United States because oil could leak from the rear differential. The company does not say whether any accidents or injuries have links to this problem.
Driving with a low oil level in the rear differential could cause damage to the internal parts. It could lead to a noise, and eventually the problem might eventually result in the components seizing, which could cause drivers to lose control of the pickup.
Dealers will check the differential for leaks. If there are no problems, then mechanics would retighten all the fasteners. If leaking, then technicians would replace the rear differential carrier gasket, replace any damaged components, and install new fasteners.
Toyota will contact affected owners about this campaign by first-class mail midway through June.
Toyota has recalled the current generation of Tacoma one other time. In 2015, the company had to repair 306 of them because the factory installed the incorrect bolts for fastening the driver's side knee-airbag module. The fix was simply changing the bolts.
The automaker has sold 43,493 units of the Tacoma in the United States through March 2017, and the company moved 191,631 in 2016. This suggests that nearly every example of the pickup for the last two model years are potentially affected by this recall.
Toyota introduced the latest generation of Tacoma for the 2016 model year. The company improved the powertrain lineup by adding a new 3.5-liter with 278 horsepower (207 kilowatts) and 265 pound-feet (358 Newton-meters) of torque. Customers can pick from a six-speed manual or automatic. For the 2017 model, the company added the TRD Pro edition that included a more off-road-ready suspension, improved interior, and upgraded trim.