Friday, February 14, 2014
Toyota said Wednesday it is recalling 1.9 million Prius cars globally to fix a programming problem in the hybrid systems, which could cause vehicles to lose power or even stop altogether.
Toyota Motor Corp. said that 997,000 Prius cars in Japan, some 713,000 in North America, another 130,000 in Europe and the rest in other regions are being recalled.
In most cases, the defect could set off a vehicle's warning lights and "probably" cause it to enter "failsafe mode", in which the car can still be driven but with reduced power. "It would slow down, eventually to stop," a spokeswoman added. Toyota said it was aware of more than 400 cases of the problem, including 300 in Japan and 90 in North America.
"Because, in the worst case, the car could stop while driving we do consider this a potential safety issue and that's the reason why we are implementing this recall," a Tokyo-based company spokesman said.
No accidents or injuries have been reported related to the problem.
The software could cause transistors to become damaged, causing warnings lights to go off, driving power to be reduced or the car to stop. The recalled vehicles were manufactured between March 2009 and February 2014.
The Prius was one of the first hybrid cars to go mainstream and was quickly adopted as a symbol of green, with the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz snapped behind the wheel.
The company recalled Prius models last year and in 2010 for different problems, but Wednesday's announcement marked the biggest call-back for a car that Toyota has bet will lead a bigger move to green cars.
The Japanese automaker also suffered massive recalls starting in 2009, affecting more than 14 million vehicles for problems including floor mats, gas pedals and brakes.
If you or a loved one has suffered injury or a wrongful death due to one of the recalled Toyota vehicles legal representation is critical. The manufacturer negligence in this matter holds them liable in the models of their vehicles that have been recalled due to uncontrollable acceleration that can result in serious injury.
Houston Personal Injury Attorney Brent Cordell is committed to justice and takes this type of claim seriously, because a driver or passenger’s safety is at risk when a manufacturer is negligent. The experience and dedication to their clients, along with having the resources to properly investigate and prepare a case is a winning combination for their clients. For more information or to schedule a free consultation, visit ToyotaInjuryAttorney.com
Saturday, February 1, 2014
Toyota has told North American dealers to stop selling six popular models with heated seats because a soft material beneath the seat covers does not comply with U.S. safety standards, company spokesman John Hanson said.
No fires or injuries have been reported yet, but cars that don't comply with U.S. safety codes can't legally be sold in the country. The company is still totaling how many vehicles are affected, but it will be in the thousands, according to the spokesman.
The stop-sale order could mean trouble for Toyota and its dealers because it covers the company's top-selling vehicles. The stop-sell order includes certain Camry, Avalon, Sienna and Tacoma models from the 2013 and 2014 model years, as well as Corollas and Tundras from 2014.
The company already has a new material that's being installed at factories and will be put in cars that are on dealer lots. "We don't think it will take long to get the parts and make the changes," Hanson said, without getting more specific.
As for vehicles already on the road, Toyota has reported the problem to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration which will decide if the sold vehicles should be recalled. A NHTSA spokesman said he would check into the matter.
If you have suffered any sort of injury as a result of a Toyota defect, you need to contact a defective products lawyer as soon as possible to schedule a free initial consultation.
The stop-sale order affects cars and trucks distributed to dealers in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. In addition, some vehicles were exported outside North America. The problem was discovered by safety regulators in South Korea, who disassembled seats and tested individual fabrics. U.S. safety standards require fabrics to resist flames at a certain rate, but the one fabric didn't meet the standard. The affected vehicles were sold since August of 2012, when the fabric supplier was changed.
Toyota has been struggling to regain its reputation for quality since 2009, after announcing massive recalls over several years for a variety of defects including braking, accelerators and floor mats. The company has already been fined for being slow on recalls, which affected more than 14 million vehicles, and faces lawsuits.
Toyota is the world's top automaker, ahead of General Motors Corp. and Volkswagen AG in global vehicle sales. The company has promised to be quicker with recalls and more careful with model development to avoid a recurrence of its troubles.
Because of the multiple legal issues involving vehicles produced by Toyota Motor Corp., we have developed a separate website to deal specifically with these cases. For more information please visit toyotainjuryattorney.com