Toyota To Recall 2.8 Million Prius And Corollas

It was just two years
ago that Toyota underwent a major recall of its’ vehicles for apparent issues
with accelerators and brake systems. At the time there reports of multiple caraccidents causing injuries (and at least one fatal accident) that were an alleged
result of sudden acceleration in Toyota vehicles. This week Reuters reported
that there would be closed to 2.8 million Prius and Corolla vehicles
recalled. 

Toyota will recall
around 2.77 million vehicles worldwide, including certain models of the Prius,
due to problems with the steering mechanism and the hybrid system water pump,
its second multi-million car recall in two months.

Toyota is recalling 1.5 million vehicles in
Japan, 670,000 vehicles in the United States and 496,000 vehicles in Europe
over a problem in the steering intermediate extension shafts, which could be
damaged at slow speed, spokesman Joichi Tachikawa said on Wednesday.

I have yet to see any reports of any autoaccidents that were a result of this steering mechanism issue. Hopefully Toyota
has caught this problem before any car crashes can take place.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a
Chicago car accident or from a Chicago auto defect case, please call Chicago personal injury attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website
at

Toyota Announces Another Recall

I have reported several times the past year about numerous Toyota vehicle recalls regarding unintended acceleration problems. Toyota was back in the news last month when The New York Times reported that Toyota was announcing another recall, this time for break and fuel pump problems.

Toyota announced that they are recalling 750,000 cars in North America, including Lexus and Avalon models, and 599,000 cars in Japan.  About 140,000 cars in the rest of Asia and Australia, and 50,000 cars in Europe, also are being recalled.

Most of the vehicles in Thursday’s recall need to be fixed for a problem in the brakes’ master cylinder. The cylinder, which contains brake fluid, could leak if filled with a third-party fluid, causing a loss in braking power, he said. Toyota has also found an electrical fault with the fuel pump that could cause the engine to stall. That defect was concentrated in models sold in Japan.

The automaker has not reported any car accidents  linked to these problems,

Models affected in the United States include the 2005-6 Avalon; the 2004-6 nonhybrid Highlander and Lexus RX 330; and 2006 Lexus GS 300, IS 250 and IS 350 vehicles, according to a company release.

Owners will be notified by mailings beginning early next month, and dealers will replace part of the brake’s master cylinder free of charge, Toyota said.

In Japan, the recall includes the Crown, Crown Majesta, Harrier, Mark X, Alphard, Kluger, Lexus GX 350, Lexus IS 250 and Lexus IS 350.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accident  or Chicago truck accident , then call Chicago personal injury attorney , Aaron Bryant, for a free consultation at 312-588-3384 or go to the firm website at www.blgchicago.com. />

NHSTA Issues Probe Into Recent Toyota Recalls

The National Highway Safety and Transportation Administration announced that they are issuing a probe into three (3) of the most recent Toyota recalls.  They are requesting documents from Toyota to determine if they made the most recent recalls in a timely manner.

 “Safety recalls are very serious matters and automakers are required to quickly report defects,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

The auto safety agency is requiring Toyota to provide documents showing when and how it learned of the defects affecting approximately 6 million vehicles in the U.S. alone. The probe will examine how the manufacturer learned of these defects, such as through consumer complaints or factory testing. Investigators are also looking into whether Toyota discovered the problems during pre-production or post-production of the affected vehicles.

Officials are checking whether Toyota has covered all affected models in its recent recalls to ensure Toyota did not miss any problems. The agency will obtain information on production data, incidents, complaints, warranty complaints, copies of tests, dates of meetings, timeliness, and supplier information.

The three recalls in question involve various Toyota and Lexus vehicles. Two of the recalls are related to the entrapment of gas pedals by floor mats. The first recall was announced on September 26, 2007, and was followed by a subsequent one on October 6, 2009. The October recall was expanded on January 29, 2010, to include additional vehicles. The third recall, involving sticking gas pedals, was announced on January 21, 2010. “Our top priority is safety and we expect that all manufacturers address automotive safety issues quickly and in a forthright manner,” said David Strickland, Administrator for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident, then call attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation at 312-588-3384.

Toyota Recieving Complaints On Prius Brakes

The Chicago Sun Times reported recently that the Toyota Motor Company has relieved over 100 complaints about the brakes on their Prius automobile in the U.S. and Japan.

The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has received about 100 complaints involving the brakes of the Prius new model. Two involved car crashes resulting in injuries.

Japan’s transport ministry said Wednesday it has also received 14 complaints since July last year about brake problems with Toyota’s new Prius hybrid.

The 14 complaints included an auto accident in July 2009, in which a Prius crashed head on into another car at an intersection. Transport ministry official Masaya Ota said two people were slightly injured in the auto accident.

The ministry ordered Toyota, the world’s No. 1 automaker, to investigate the complaints. The other 13 cases happened from December to January 2010. Ota said the ministry has yet to receive a formal report on the complaints from Toyota.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood told The Associated Press Tuesday that federal officials had to alert Toyota to the seriousness of the safety issues that eventually led to the recalls.

“They should have taken it seriously from the very beginning when we first started discussing it with them,” he said. “Maybe they were a little safety deaf.”

LaHood also said the U.S. government was considering civil penalties for Toyota for having dragged its feet on safety concerns.

I will be monitoring these issues closely as the investigations continue. Click here to read the entire article.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident, then call attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation on your case at 312-588-3384.

NHTSA Responds To Toyota’s 3rd Recall

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration issued a press release yesterday regarding Toyota’s recent recall of the Prius and Lexus HS 250H based on break system problems.  Based on these recent issues with Toyota, the Department has opened its own investigation.

“Last Thursday, NHTSA opened a formal investigation of 2010 Toyota Prius hybrid vehicles in response to consumer complaints about braking difficulties, and today, Toyota has acknowledged a safety defect,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “When I spoke with Toyota President Akio Toyoda last week, he assured me that his company takes U.S. safety concerns very seriously. The U.S. DOT will remain in constant communication with Toyota to hold them to that promise. In the meantime, if you are concerned about your car’s braking performance, contact your Toyota dealer.”

NHTSA recommends that owners contact Toyota dealers immediately if they notice changes in their braking performance.

Loss of braking is most likely to occur when traveling over an uneven road surface, pothole or bump. If this occurs, the agency advises owners to continue to firmly press on the brake to stop the vehicle. As an extra precaution, drivers can leave extra stopping distance while awaiting their recall notice.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident, then call attorney Aaron Bryant for free consultation on your case at 312-588-3384.

Toyata Releases Full List Of Recalled Vehicles

I wrote earlier this week about the Toyota recall and the remedies they were implementing regarding their floor mat and accelerator defect. Toyota has now extended the number of vehicles and has released the whole list on their website. The following vehicles have been recalled:

2008-2010 Highlander
2009-2010 Corolla
2009-2010 Venza
2009-2010 Matrix
2009-2010 Pontiac Vibe

Toyota released the following statement:

“Toyota’s remedy plan is to modify or replace the accelerator pedals on the subject vehicles to address the risk of floor mat entrapment, even when an older-design all weather floor mat or other inappropriate mat is improperly attached, or is placed on top of another floor mat.  Floor surface modifications are also being considered and will be included in the remedy plan for any model for which it is deemed appropriate.
 
Initially, dealers will be instructed on how to reshape the accelerator pedal for the repair.  As replacement parts with the same shape as the modified pedal become available, they will be made available to the dealers for the repair. Customers who have had the pedal reshape remedy completed will have the opportunity to receive a new pedal if they desire, after replacement pedals become available.
 
In addition, Toyota will replace any Toyota all-weather floor mat in a subject vehicle with a newly designed mat, free of charge. For those customers who have the previous design all-weather floor mat but do not need or want the newly designed all-weather floor mat, Toyota will recover the previous design all-weather floor mat and reimburse its price.”

I wonder if the Matrix Zipcar I use up the street is still around?  I guess I will find out soon enough.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a Chicago car accident or Chicago truck accident, then call attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation at 312-588-3384.

Toyota Announced Remedy For Floor Mat/Accelorator Problem

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced on November 25, 2009 that Toyota has identified a vehicle-based remedy to fix a sudden acceleration safety issue involving floor mats trapping accelerator pedals in various Toyota and Lexus models. Toyota announced the recall of these vehicles in early October and said it would soon develop a vehicle-based remedy to reduce the risk of a car crash due to accelerator pedal entrapment.

The models involved in the recall are: 2007 to 2010 MY Camry, 2005 to 2010 MY Avalon, 2004 to 2009 MY Prius, 2005-2010 MY Tacoma, 2007-2010 MY Tundra, 2007-2010 MY ES 350, 2006-2010 MY IS 250, and 2006 to 2010 MY IS 350.

NHTSA said Toyota plans to reconfigure the accelerator pedal, and in some cases the shape of the floor surface under the pedal, to address the risk of pedal entrapment due to floor mat interference, particularly with regard to inappropriate or improperly attached floor mats. At the same time, Toyota will develop replacement pedals for these vehicles, which will become available for some models in April 2010. Toyota will provide owners with the new pedal, when it becomes available, even if the vehicle has already received the modified pedal under the recall.

In addition, vehicles with any genuine Toyota or Lexus accessory all-weather floor mats will be provided with newly-designed replacement driver- and front-passenger side all-weather mats.

Unsecured floor mats can cause a huge impediment to drivers and it is good to see that Toyota has stepped up to he plate and fixed this problem.

If you or someone you know has been involved in an Illinois car accident or Illinois truck accident, then call attorney Aaron Bryant for a free consultation on your case at 312-588-3384.