2009 has seen a bumper crop of automobile recalls. The Detroit Free Press reports that there were 15.2 million units recalled this year – nearly double the 8.6 million vehicles that were called back in all of 2008. And the leader of the recall pack was Toyota, with a knee-wobbling 4.87 million cars and trucks recalled due mostly to the Japanese automaker's unintended acceleration issue. Toyota had nine major recalls in all in 2009, with the other big issue coming courtesy of rusting Tundra frames. Toyota took the top spot in recalls for the first time ever this year, which tells you as much about how bad 2009 was for Aichi, Japan-based automaker as it does about its history of making high-quality automobiles.
This year's second biggest offender? Ford Motor Company. The Blue Oval recalled 4.52 million vehicles to land in second place in the recall rankings, due mainly to the company's ongoing issue with cruise control modules. Without the years-old cruise control issue, Ford would have had posted best year ever. General Motors rounded out the top three, with 2.24 million recalls announced in 2009, thought it is worth noting that the Detroit, MI-based automaker's 17 total recalls was the most of any automaker. Chrysler actually had a good 2009 – at least when it comes to recalls – with just under 600,000 vehicles affected. Head over to the Detroit Free Press for the complete ranking of 2009 recalls by automaker.
*UPDATE: In related global news, Toyota is recalling 43,000 Chinese-market vehicles including its Highlander and Previa models, along with Lexus' ES350 and RX350. The culprit? Engine oil leaks.
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[Sources: Detroit Free Press; Zachs Investment Research (via Yahoo)