• Jan 27, 2010
Toyota has quite the PR nightmare on its hands. The boiling cauldron of complaints surrounding unintended acceleration issues bubbled over this month with two separate but giant recalls. The latest involves eight Toyota models that contain defective accelerator pedal mechanisms that could stick over time due to wear.

There is no fix available for the pedal mechanisms yet and dealers have continued to sell new models affected by the recall, so Toyota announced yesterday that it's suspending the sale and production of these eight models for the week of February 1. It was a bold move that made headlines, as Toyota stands to lose a lot of money. On the other hand, the Japanese automaker got some pats on the back for doing the right thing.

Turns out, the decision to stop producing these vehicles wasn't made by Toyota alone. The Detroit News reports that Toyota is required by law to stop selling the vehicles since there is no fix available yet. David Strickland, the new administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said that Toyota consulted with his agency, which informed the automaker of its obligations and it complied. That still doesn't answer why these recalled vehicles were being sold five days after the recall was announced.

Nevertheless, Toyota spokesman Mike Michels is reported saying that the company's decision to stop selling the recalled vehicles was voluntary, but that they also had a legal requirement to do so. How do you voluntary do something that you're obligated to do?

In related news, General Motors has confirmed to Autoblog's sister site, AOL Autos, that it is putting a hold on all remaining Pontiac Vibe sales, as the model is under recall for the same throttle issue that afflicts its mechanical twin, the Toyota Matrix. Fortunately for GM, there are apparently only six Vibe units left in stock nationwide as the brand's shutdown continues.



[Sources: The Detroit News, AOL Autos | Image: David McNew/Getty]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 83 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      The government forcibly took over GM and Chrysler? WTF? They asked the government for help. The government didn't come in and say "you're weak and my UAW friends are unhappy so I'm taking over". GM and Chrysler asked them to do so and used shares of themselves as collateral. Certainly better than the bank bailouts where the government got nothing for collateral.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Brian, please tell me you don't actually believe that.
      • 4 Years Ago
      R.I.P Toyota

      1937 - 2010?
      • 4 Years Ago
      I realy don't understand what all the kvetching is about here. If you make a product that can kill someone, the government should force you to stop selling it until theproblem is rectified.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Logically, yes...unless of course, there's huge tax revenue involved...like, from...say...cigarettes?
      • 4 Years Ago
      What a disaster. I KNEW this had something to do with the authorities. No automaker voluntarily stops selling EIGHT models.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Disaster indeed.

        Other automakers (GM, Ford, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai, etc), on the other hand, are all smiling I am sure!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Toyota's been lying their way through this entire episode. It's likely they've been covering up unintended acceleration issues long before they became public.

        Toyota is a master at deceptive marketing and manipulating image. Why is a company that sells monstrosities like the LX570, the Sequoia, millions of trucks and the least efficient small engines considered the standard for efficiency and environmental consciousness? It's all marketing spin.

        Toyota's 'reputation for quality' is as real as Tiger Wood's fidelity.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Just when i was thinking, 'wow, good move on Toyota's part to get this fixed and behind them'. Come to find out, they had to legally. hahaha, ouch.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I was listening to the news on the radio yesterday and they were talking to a rep from Consumer Reports. In nowhere in the interview did the rep state that someone had died as a result of this issue. The public should know how severe this issue is.
        • 4 Years Ago

        You have to give them some credit for being the best when it comes to "spin".

        No one covers-up like Toyota.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Toyota. Moving Forward. Due to Sudden Acceleration
        • 4 Years Ago
        You sir, win at the internets.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "The boiling cauldron of complaints surrounding unintended acceleration issues bubbled over this month with two separate but giant recalls...."

        " I love what you do for me - Toyota!."

        NOT!
      invisiblepigeon3
      • 4 Years Ago
      Autoblog must be making a fortune in ad revenue from all the morons posting "ITS THE ECU!"
        • 4 Years Ago
        @invisiblepigeon3
        Don't cry because we're right
      • 4 Years Ago
      You know this is a bigger problem then floor mats and bad pedals parts made by a US supplier. Want to know how I came to such conclusion? Toyota claims "There is no fix available for the pedal mechanisms" but there is, they can just start ordering thousands of the same parts made by Denso since they claim the ones made in the JDM are good and replace the bad US parts if that's the case...
        • 4 Years Ago
        akkkk... logic... noooo. yeah, something's fishey.
      • 4 Years Ago
      So this is my theory...Since Toyota has no sporty cars, all their other products are trying to make up for it by adding speed and excitement spontaneously to your drive. The only remedy is to have the FT-86 perform well, and bring it to market ASAP.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Right...

      Ever stop to think that, in previous recalls, the manufacturers had a fix in place by the time the recall occurred?

      Toyota doesn't know what's causing this. That's why they're being ordered to shut down.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Toyota. Moving Forward. Due to Sudden Acceleration

      BTW here in Europe , news just reported that Toyota will recall 1.7 mil. vehicles in Europe with the same problem. So it's not just North America
        • 4 Years Ago
        I wonder where those parts are made?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Toyota has racked up ten years of sudden acceleration complaints with NHTSA - going back to 2000.
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