Toyota Hopes for Quick Fix
At Pinehurst Toyota, the fix is in — almost.
The local dealership expects to have the parts by Friday to repair sticking accelerator pedals that resulted in the recall of 2.3 million vehicles in the United States.
“We know what’s causing the sticking accelerator pedals, and we know what we have to do to fix it,” Jim Lents, president and chief operating officer of Toyota Motor Sales, said in a statement.
The fix involves reinforcing the pedal assembly in a way that eliminates the excess friction that has caused the pedals to stick.
Locally, Pinehurst Toyota says it will do everything possible to make the repairs promptly and safely for its customers.
“We’ll be working extended hours until most of the affected vehicles have been serviced,” said Tom Holderfield, managing partner of Pinehurst Auto Group, which owns Pinehurst Toyota-Hyundai-Mitsubishi-Kia.
Toyota will cover the cost of the repairs.
Holderfield said he was unsure how many affected vehicles are in Moore County or the surrounding area.
Only certain vehicles in the following make and models are affected: 2009-2010 RAV4, 2009-2010 Corolla, 2009-2010 Matrix, 2005-2010 Avalon, 2007-2010 Camry, 2010 Highlander, 2007-2010 Tundra and 2008-2010 Sequoia.
No Lexus Division or Scion vehicles are affected. Also unaffected are Toyota Prius, Tacoma, Sienna, Venza, Solara, Yaris, 4Runner, FJ Cruiser, Land Cruiser, Highlander hybrids and certain Camry models, including Camry hybrids, all of which remain for sale.
Camry, RAV4, Corolla and Highlander vehicles with vehicle identification numbers (VIN) that begin with the letter “J” are not affected by the accelerator pedal recall.
Customers who are unsure if their vehicles are affected can bring them by the dealership.
“We can do a quick visual inspection to see if the vehicle is affected,” Holderfield said.
The fix, which takes between 10 and 30 minutes to complete, involves installing a precision-cut steel reinforcement bar into the accelerator pedal assembly, which will reduce surface tension and prevent the friction that has caused the pedals to stick, Toyota said in its statement.
The company confirmed its solution through “rigorous” testing, the statement said.
Those local customers affected are encouraged to call the dealership at (910) 692-2424 to set up an appointment.
In the event that a driver experiences an accelerator pedal that sticks in a partial open throttle position or returns slowly to idle position, the vehicle can be controlled with firm and steady application of the brakes, the company statement said.
Separate from the recall for sticking accelerator pedals, Toyota is in the process of recalling vehicles to address rare instances in which floor mats have trapped the accelerator pedal in certain Toyota and Lexus models and is already notifying customers about how it will handle this issue. In the case of vehicles covered by both recalls, Toyota said it will remedy both at the same time, the release said.
Contact Tom Embrey at (910) 693-2484 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
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