By on February 13, 2020

A friend once had a ’94 Olds 88 with delaminating paint, souring the Olds ownership experience and causing him to pine for his recently departed ’86 model. The newer model’s hood and trunk lid looked like hell, but at least he wasn’t alone in his misery (there were a lot of peeling 1990s GM cars on the road at the time).

Toyota owners, on the other hand, are used to bragging about their vehicles’ longevity, dependability, and solid resale value, making issues like peeling paint a black eye in an otherwise wholesome relationship. It’s worth noting that they’re among the most loyal customers on the market.

These owners will be happy to hear the automaker plans to cover the cost of applying a whiter shade of pale to the exterior of their older Toyota models.

Yes, Toyota Canada customers were not included in the U.S. customer support program announced by the automaker last year, a make-nice effort that covered a slew of older models that arrived from the factory with Blizzard Pearl or Super White paint — a shade that now covers significantly less surface area on the same number of vehicles.

As reported by CBC, Toyota Canada will now offer a “warranty enhancement program” covering white Toyotas dating back to the 2008 model year.

The country’s public broadcaster shed light on the issue two years ago, detailing one 2011 RAV4 owner’s attempt to get the company to fix her rapidly delaminating CUV. Obviously the model’s warranty was long gone by that point, something Toyota cited as the reason for turning down a gratis paint job. That left the Nova Scotia owner steamed — and the RAV4 with a meter-square section of primer exposed on its rear quarter panel.

Other owners of older Toyotas picked up the protest torch. Among them, a Prince Edward Island resident who owned a 2009 RAV4 sporting a paint job more closely resembling a patchwork quilt… or perhaps a chessboard.

From CBC:

The letter to affected customers said: “The covered condition may occur when sunlight over time degrades the adhesion between the factory-applied paint primer coat layer and the base metal electrodeposition layer causing the paint to peel from the metal body part.”

It said if the condition is verified, the specific panel that is peeling will be repainted.

The program is broken into two parts. The primary coverage is in effect until Feb. 9, 2022, with no year or mileage limits. The secondary coverage kicks in after the primary coverage expires and is good for 10 years from the date the vehicle was first licensed, regardless of mileage.

Damage caused by collisions, deep rock chips, dents and deep scratches will not be covered and must be repaired before a panel is repainted.

Covered under the extended paint warranty are a slew of vehicles: the 2010-2015 4Runner, 2008-2017 Camry, Avalon, and RAV4, 2009-2018 Corolla, 2012-2015 Scion iQ, and 2011-2015 Scion xB. Those who paid out of pocket for a paint job could see compensation from their dealer.

Toyota rolled out a repainting effort in the United States for the same vehicles last September, leaving Canadian customers wondering when, or if, they might see a similar program.

Obviously, the owners first contacted by the outlet were happy to hear of the warranty, though criticism of the delay was apparent. Still, it seems, at least in one case, to have had the desired effect.

“If they do come through on this, I will remain a loyal Toyota owner for my next purchase,” said Jay Willyard, owner of the two-tone ’09 RAV4.

[Image: Toyota]

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23 Comments on “Toyota Owners in the Great White North Finally Get Their White Paint...”

  • avatar

    “The newer model’s hood and trunk lid looked like hell,”

    Considering places like Maaco will paint an entire vehicle for a few hunny, how much could it POSSIBLY cost to shoot some white on a hood & trunk lid? Strikes me that there’s really no excuse to drive around like that, unless you literally have NO money, but then again- you have a car, somehow……

    • 0 avatar

      According to the letter, the factory primer was peeling off the metal underneath. That’s not going to be a quick fix.

    • 0 avatar

      “how much could it POSSIBLY cost to shoot some white on a hood & trunk lid?”

      depends- do you want that white to match the rest of the body, do you want it to not look like the surface of a grapefruit, and do you want it to stick for more than 6 months? You ain’t getting that for “a few hunny” from Maaco.

      “Strikes me that there’s really no excuse to drive around like that, unless you literally have NO money, but then again- you have a car, somehow……”

      classist f***.

      • 0 avatar

        Indeed. My 28 year old station car has fading paint from being outside for its entire life. I certainly could afford to have it painted but why bother? So some tool can bang into it while parked at the train station?

        BTW, a cheapo paint job from Macco looks like crap – lousy masking instead of parts removal and many steps skipped to keep the price low.

        Don’t be so quick to pass judgments – you have no idea what somebody’s situation might be. That POS might be owned by somebody who lost all their money because their daughter had cancer and medical bills wiped them out.

        • 0 avatar

          All valid points. And I have a Honda van with a few areas starting to fade, and no way will I spend more than the value of the vehicle getting it repainted. I’m not elitist in any way, I own vehicles across the full spectrum and if a 2500 dollar vehicle fits a particular need then I happily drive that. My comment was not about fading or patina from years of honest use, but rather being stuck with a newish vehicle missing large swaths of paint. Sorry if it came across otherwise.

  • avatar
    Big Smoke

    VW did the same thing to Canadians. While the Americans got a buy back for their cheating TDi’s. Canadians got a $1500 gift certificate against a new car purchase. That did eventually change. But it took a while.

    Did you know that 9 out of 10 Ashley Madison members prefer to drive a VW group Diesel vehicle?

  • avatar

    “the specific panel that is peeling will be repainted”

    Enjoy your patchwork quilt. The odds of successfully matching white paint on an aging car are about the same as Bernie Sanders presenting a balanced economic plan.

    • 0 avatar

      It is a horrible plan but it is free. Sort of like Canada healthcare

    • 0 avatar

      “The odds of successfully matching white paint on an aging car are about the same as Bernie Sanders presenting a balanced economic plan.”

      coincidentally, the odds are about the same as someone who wedges a political snipe into a discussion like this having something worth listening to.

      • 0 avatar

        Lighten up, JimZ. A little light political humour never hurt anyone.

        White paint matching is a thing. Also doing one panel doesn’t mean much when the others start peeling later on. Owners should push for a full paint job if at all possible.

  • avatar

    White paint:
    • Is generally less expensive for the manufacturer, and for the body shop
    • Tends to hide small flaws (OEM’s have sometimes painted the first run of a new production model in white because of this)
    • Stays looking clean longer than other colors
    • Is easier to touch-up/color-match vs. many other colors
    • Fades significantly less in the sun than other colors
    • Saves energy and extends range due to lower solar load on the HVAC system
    • Saves thousands of lives each year because other drivers can see you and avoid hitting you
    • Saves billions of dollars in property damage for the same reason

  • avatar

    – Why did this only affect the two colors? Different primer formulation?

  • avatar

    I remember all the trouble when they switched from solvent enamels to waterborne base and clear. Baths, prep, and phos was very critical. I remember T-birds in Lorraine with fish-eyes. The inspector nearly executed the paint rep. I thought I was next, but my QE was patient, and actually made me some battered perch he caught earlier in the day – in a deep fryer right there on the desk. It was a brutal day, and my clothes were wrecked, but they were happy the parts turned out to be OK.

  • avatar

    Funny this article appears. Because someone parks a red Lexus IS of older veriety 2 houses down from me, and its hood is totally peeling.

    Previously, my relative had a 92 Corolla and it had a “skin cancer”. But I attribute this to it being parked next to a Wyeth plant. Her other car was Mercury Sable and had same issue.

    Now, look at modern Toyota manual booklet, and it says there – apply car polish when water no longer beads on the surface. I don’t know if that would help though

    • 0 avatar

      This peeling did not just appear on Toyotas until these particular models. The ’97 and ’98 Camrys have had delaminating clearcoat for at least a decade or more. And bumper covers that haven’t matched after five years. Interesting to note is that the ’93 to ’96 Camrys never exhibit such paint problems.

  • avatar

    Color me surprised.

    Based on what I read, I would have thought that the Duh sisters, Hon and Toyo, were the makers of perfection. How could there be ANY issue with perfection motors?

    Once again, the only thing that outdoes the myth of the Duh sister quality in the modern era is the arrogance of those who continue to buy them and who continue to tailgate you on the highway even in the slow lane.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    General Motors cars had this problem too…like 25 years ago.

  • avatar

    My manager’s white Honda Odyssey is losing it’s paint on the roof. She regularly sees white Odysseys on the road with the same affliction but Honda wont cover it. But they will cover a certain blue that is doing the same thing. Most likely she’ll end up paying to paint it and years later they’ll send out a notice to fix it.

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