The ongoing row over the safety or otherwise of coolant R1234yf has taken a new turn with Toyota Deutschland joining the boycott instigated by Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz and smart brands.

The Toyota Motor Europe subsidiary has reportedly told Agence France Presse that it had decided not to use the new, more environmentally friendly air conditioning coolant. Toyota Deutschland says it will revert to using R134a, an older coolant, for its GT86, Prius+ and Lexus GS models.

Since 1 January 2013, European Commission norms have mandated car makers to use refrigerants which are less harmful to the environment in newly introduced models. Most OEMs with operations in the European Union had decided on R1234yf as a way of complying with the standards.

"Toyota regards it as the duty of individual companies within the automotive industry to ensure that vehicles meet current safety standards," a statement from Toyota Deutschland says. "Unfortunately, there is no consensus on this issue on the European market. For this reason, we have decided, as a temporary measure, to use R134a so as to dispel any possible concerns our customers might have," it added.

Author: Glenn Brooks