Toyota announces fix for accelerator problem

Toyota Prius

Toyota has finally announced the fix for their accelerator issue.

A concerned reader has e-mailed us about the issue earlier, asking for our input, and I’m happy to inform him that Toyota has finally finished negotiations with the NHTSA and the fix has been announced. Toyota will soon be offering it to owners of affected cars. This will be the largest recall in the automaker’s history, with about 3.8 million cars affected.

Toyota will be reconfiguring and reshaping, or in some cases replacing, the accelerator. The floor surface under it will be reshaped. This will involve having to train dealers how to reshape accelerators. New accelerators will be shipped in April. If you have your pedal reshaped now, you are still eligible to get it replaced with the new pedal once it is shipped. Another part of the fix is if your car is fitted with Toyota or Lexus all-weather floor mats, you will get a new set of redesigned front mats.

There will also be a brake override system installed on certain affected models. It will automatically turn off the engine if both the accelerator and brake pedal are depressed simultaneously. The cars that will be getting this particular part of the fix are the 2007-2010 Camry, 2005-2010 Avalon, 2007-2010 Lexus ES350, 2006-2010 Lexus IS250 and 2006-2010 IS350. This part of the fix appears to be limited to vehicles fitted with a push-button start system, which the exception of the Toyota Prius, which has the system but isn’t getting the brake override system. The only issue I see with this system is that left-foot braking and heel-and-toe downshifts aren’t possible without the engine shutting down, and while the Camry, Avalon and ES350 haven’t got sporting credentials, the IS250 and 350 have, so it’s a bit of a shame.

Here is the full list of affected cars:

  • 2007 to 2010 Camry
  • 2005 to 2010 Avalon
  • 2004 to 2009 Prius
  • 2005 to 2010 Tacoma
  • 2007 to 2010 Tundra
  • 2007 to 2010 Lexus ES 350
  • 2006 to 2010 Lexus IS 250
  • 2006 to 2010 Lexus IS 350

If you own any of these cars, as I mentioned in previous articles, remove your driver’s side floor mat and contact your local dealership to arrange to get the fix installed. You can also look up the number of your country’s branch of Toyota or Lexus and contact them directly.

For those not reading this, Toyota will send notifications to owners of the Avalon, Camry, and Lexus ES 350 by the end of the year, while owners of any of the other cars will receive notifications during the beginning of 2010. There’s no word on when exactly the recall begins, but if they begin notifying people at the end of the year, then it should be available by early 2010.

Source: Autoblog

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