Late Wednesday, Toyota Motor Corp. added more than one million more vehicles to its recall related to sudden-acceleration safety issues.
On Tuesday, Torrance-based Toyota Motor Sales announced it was instructing dealers to temporarily suspend sales of eight models involved in the recall for sticking accelerator pedals, announced on Jan. 21 (Toyota release, FAQs).
Toyota’s accelerator pedal recall and suspension of sales includes the Toyota Division vehicles listed below. No Scion vehicles are affected by these actions. Also not affected by the recall are, Sienna, Solara, Yaris, 4Runner, FJ Cruiser, Land Cruiser and select Camry models, including Camry hybrids, which remain for sale.
Nearly 8 million recalled vehicles, including those announced by Toyota last October for floor mats trapping accelerator pedals, include:
- 2005-2010 Avalon
- Certain 2007-2010 Camry
- 2009-2010 Corolla
- 2008-2010 Highlander
- 2007-2010 MY ES 350 (Lexus)
- 2006-2010 MY IS 250 (Lexus)
- 2006-2010 MY IS 350 (Lexus)
- 2009-2010 Matrix
- 2004-2009 Prius
- 2009-2010 Pontiac Vibe (Toyota makes for General Motors Co.)
- 2009-2010 RAV4
- 2008-2010 Sequoia
- 2007-2010 Tundra
- 2009-2010 Venza
If owners of recalled vehicles notice any problems with their accelerator (i.e. hard to depress, slow to return or is unsmooth during operation), AAA recommends they drive the vehicle to the nearest safe location, shut the engine off and contact their local Toyota dealer for assistance.
Safety complaints are investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Consumers who wish to file a safety complaint may do so at http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/ivoq/index.cfm.
If motorists experience a stuck accelerator pedal while driving any vehicle, AAA recommends the following:
- Stay calm, but act quickly.
- Keep looking at the road ahead. Looking away from the road to see what’s wrong with the pedal will greatly increase the chances of a crash.
- Be sure the foot is completely off the accelerator. Some stuck accelerator crashes have later been found to be the result of an honest mistake—the driver thought he or she was pushing on the brake.
- Put the vehicle’s transmission in neutral or, in a vehicle with standard transmission, depress the clutch. Do NOT turn off the engine. Doing so will cause the power assist to steering and braking to disengage and make it difficult or impossible to steer, and harder to brake. Turning the key too far could possibly lock the steering wheel.
- Steer the car to a safe place and stop, and then turn off the engine. If stopped by the side of a road, turn on emergency flashers and put out flares or reflective triangles. If unable to get the vehicle off the roadway, allow it to come to a stop and turn on emergency flashers. Do not restart the vehicle.
Toyota has told the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) that it plans to reconfigure the accelerator pedal, and in some cases, the shape and floor surface under the pedal, according to a NHTSA announcement. Toyota also told NHTSA that it is developing replacement pedals for these vehicles, which will become available for some models in April.
In addition, vehicles with Toyota or Lexus accessory all-weather floor mats will be provided with newly-designed replacement driver- and front-passenger side all-weather mats.
Consumers may contact Toyota at 1-800-331-4331 or the NHTSA hotline 1-888-327-4236 for more information.
On a related note, major U.S. rental companies have said they are removing Toyota vehicles from their fleets for the time being.