The last time the arachnids attacked our motor vehicles, they mounted a low-level campaign against the Mazda6, blocking the evaporative-canister vent line and causing 65,000 cars to be recalled.
Flush with success, they’ve gone after the biggest target of them all: Toyota. Our old friend Cameron Miquelon reports at TTAC:
[T]he cause of your airbag going off was spiders, which you find out later that day when the local news reports that Toyota has issued a recall (again), affecting 870,000 vehicles including the one now residing in an insurance salvage yard that you, no doubt, are going to have a hard time collecting anything upon.
According to CNN Money, the 870,000 Toyotas are Camrys, Venzas and Avalons screwed together and sold for the 2012 and 2013 model years, hybrids included. The recall notice states that the webs spiders make within the confines of a drainage tube attached to the car’s AC unit could force water to drip onto the airbag’s control module, creating a short circuit followed by the airbag warning light (and the driver’s side airbag itself) going off. To make matters worse, the same issue can lead to loss of power steering, as well.
This is much, much worse than merely having part of your fuel system blocked.
Still, this is one more way in which, as Mlle. Miquelon notes, nature is so fascinating.