Toyota Recall: Answering Your Questions

These are uncertain times for the people who own the 2.3 million Toyota and Pontiac vehicles recalled yesterday for a defective accelerator pedal. This latest recall comes after several reports of Toyota cars that accelerated uncontrollably, including one tragic case where a family died after the loaner they were driving went out of control in Southern California. We talked with Toyota’s John Hanson, national manager for environmental safety and quality, to clarify a number of questions.

How do I know my car has a problem now?
Hanson says, “The accelerator might feel a little balky or stiff or rough when you depress it. The pedal may be slow to return to its original position after you let up on it. It won’t spring back like it used to.” If you notice any of these symptoms contact your dealer immediately. The problem is progressive, meaning if you feel a slight change, it likely will get worse over time.
Is there a fix for the problem?
Toyota has yet to announce how they will fix the problem. If owners experience any sort of unusual feedback from the accelerator pedal they should call their dealer immediately for a diagnosis and repair. Hanson could not confirm that replacing the worn assembly with a new one is what dealers are being told to do, but that fix should delay problems until differently sourced units arrive.

What if my dealer can’t or won’t fix the problem?
Hanson says dealers have been instructed to take vehicles on a case-by-case basis, and if owners are concerned that their vehicle wasn’t properly treated by the dealer, they should call Toyota Customer Service at 800-331-4331.

Are all the vehicles in the recall prone to unintended acceleration?
Each car is equipped with the faulty system, Hanson said, but the recall is the result of a wear issue, meaning it takes a certain amount of use before problems arise. Hanson could not give a time frame or mileage driven that owners can look for to know if their car is at risk. The vehicles known to have the issue all vary in those regards, which he says was one reason it took so long to diagnose the problem. If you just bought a new Toyota, it will likely take time for a problem to occur, but, again, there is no known mileage or time because climate and daily use can impact the amount of wear.  

Are new cars with the faulty system still being sold on dealer lots?
No, Toyota announced it has stopped selling all models included in the recall.

Is Toyota still building new models involved in the recall?
Yes, but production will halt on Feb. 1. Those vehicles assembled before then will not go on sale.

When will more information be available about a fix?
Developing a solution may take some time, but Hanson said more information about the process would likely be announced in a few weeks. Hanson said Toyota is working “rapidly” to develop a fix.  
By David Thomas | January 22, 2010 | Comments (45)



"Are new cars with the faulty system still being sold on dealer lots?
Yes, as of today dealers are still selling vehicles involved in the recall, Hanson said. "




That's not the same as selling new cars that haven't yet been addressed. Reading comprehension anyone?

None of the cars on lots have been addressed. As the story states the fix hasn't even been created yet. They just have parts that haven't worn yet.


I agree the spokesmen answer does not indicate that Toyota is selling cars that haven't been addressed. People tend to read into answers they want to see. Either way I drive a Ford so I don't care!


this is way bigger than Audi's problem...where is the cross with TOYOTA inscribed on the top?

Again, there is no fix. None of the cars on lots have been addressed.



There have been that many incidents reported but Toyota confirms that all the recalled vehicles' parts CAN develop this problem and wear prematurely. That is their word not mine. I don't think anyone wants to take the risk that their car is one of the few it happens to.


As always,
could you, car enthusiasts take a neutral position and look at it as good thing. Toyota's bad rep is good for consumer. And for Domestics, and for Honda :o)

Steve Papo

Dave Thomas,
You are incorrect in stating that Toyota has not addressed any cars on their lots. We just bought a new Camry for my wife and the dealership informed us yesterday that we can't pick-up the car until tomorrow as they're going to replace the accelerator pedal because it was not returning to it's full position. They said they tested every car in their inventory and the pedal in ours felt stiff. You should show better judgement and not make such sweeping statements.


I'm not fan of Toyota's or Japanese cars in particular but the audience has to remember this is, not Car & Driver or This is just a blog not the end all be all for facts.

Derrick G


You might have a NEW pedal, but you don't have a REDESIGNED pedal. So what Dave said wasn't incorrect. To think there are cars with the problem on new car lots when Toyota says this is a wear problem is a tad scary.

Paul R.

How do you know the new pedal is not a redesigned one? You don't you're just running your mouth.

Paul R.
There is no redesigned pedal as of yet. I talked to Mr. Hanson at Toyota. They are working on a fix, they will not even announce what that fix is for weeks. So we are not just publishing articles to make things up. This is the situation. There is a small chance that this will happen, but because of the sheer numbers of cars on the road the odds still add up to real people experiencing problems and in a few cases, tragically. This is quite serious.

Steve Papo,
As Derrick G says you got a "new" pedal that is not worn, but it is not of a new design. I don't even think they can use one from the other supplier in these specific vehicles. Toyota will announce further action in the coming weeks. It is likely you can not wear out the new pedal before that time, but there is no known amount of wear given for this defect.

If you don't like our site for whatever reason that is fine, but please don't suggest that because you prefer other sites that we are spreading misinformation. We are trying to educate owners and consumers of the situation.

I don't think the editors at Edmunds and C&D who I know well would argue with anything printed above and in cases like this competition is not as important as getting the facts out to the broadest base of car owners.

Amuro Ray

Is there any reason why the Sienna is not included? Different pedal design? I'm curious 'coz one of my relative is thinking of getting a Sienna when the new 2011 comes out...

It also seems that all the recalled vehicles were built here in N. America. It's just seems odd that the Sienna is not there...

(well, the Tacoma too)

Amuro Ray

I mean, getting a 2010 Sienna when the 2011 comes out (assuming 2011 is the new model redesign)

Derrick G

Paul R,

I knew because Toyota's own spokesman was quoted in the article as having stated there wasn't one yet. If you'd read the entire article before firing off your mouth, you'd have clearly seen that. And if Toyota's own people are saying that, I don't know of a better source.

Kevin Bonsal

My Toyota could average a recall a year and in my opinion it would still be the best car I have ever owned. I have a 164,000 miles without any unscheduled maintenance stops. Prior to biting the bullet and buying my first Japanese car I had two unreliable cars from General Motors and one from Dodge. I would never again buy a car from either those companies. My Toyota's resale value is amazing.


Meanwhile in a parallel universe...


David Thomas - Kicking Hard Drives Editor:
"An Apple spokesman announced today, 'There is a fix on the way, but not there yet. In the meantime, Macs are susceptible to the virus'".

User #1:
"Does that mean the new Macs could get a virus at some point?"

David Thomas - Kicking Hard Drives Editor:
"Yup, no fix yet, so it could happen."

User #2:

David Thomas - Kicking Hard Drives Editor:
"User #2, that's what the guy said."

User #3:
"I just bought a Mac. The salesman working on commission told me there was no virus on it. Therefore it could never get a virus. DAVID THOMAS IS A LIAR! LIAR! LIAR! LIAR!"

User #4:
"LOLZ! I use a PC!"

David Thomas - Kicking Hard Drives Editor:
"I'm sure he checked that there was no virus on it, but it could get one in the future."

User #5:
"DAVID THOMAS IS THE DEVIL INCARNATE! Macworld wouldn't spread such lies! David Thomas is just making things up! EVIL, BAD DAVID THOMAS!"

David Thomas - Kicking Hard Drives Editor:
"Hey guys, I'm quoting the Mac spokesperson. Pretty sure Macworld wouldn't disagree with that."

User #6:
"General Computers LOLZ!"

User #7:
"Not Government Computers LOLZ!"

User #8:

User #9:
"6 speed modem, LOLZ!"

User #10:
"I've had a Mac for 15 minutes and not a single problem so far!"

User #11:
"Political talking point #237! LOLZ!"

Jackass user #12:
"Meanwhile in a parallel universe..."


Duh, first it was the floormat,then the it seems that it is an accellerator system not just a pedal. WTF!


Your post is funny but *YAWN* you need to get a life.


The problem is not a result of wear over time. My brand new Avalon had the problem in 2005 and Toyota denied that there was an issue. I got rid of the problem by getting rid of The Avalon because it was dangerous.
Had Toyota paid attention at the time, this could have been averted. Now people have died and Toyota have millions of problems to fix.


So if we report our faulty accelerator to the dealership...will we get our car back... fixed ?Or will we get our car back only when they find the solution to this problem??


If I were you Confused, I'd just get rid of that Toyota and buy a different car from a different company. Toyota is one big massive FAIL right now.

Likely you'll get a new unit without wear for now. Then have to bring it back in when the final fix is determined. But there is no pre-set routine for this recall. Toyota is saying it is a case by case basis for now.

Economist 101

Audi is a different (and sadder) story as the problem was never proven, just suspected. It very nearly put them out of business.

Toyota has two recalls, so everyone here is getting them mixed up. The floor mat issue is one thing; but this one is a sticky accelerator problem that was known about for 4 years (so the class action lawsuit filed in Nov 09 claims .. something like 250 deaths and 2000 injuries). So it is a big deal.

I`m not sure what the Dealer was trying to sell one fellow here; but it clearly says they are working on a fix, but do not have one yet. New cars are "not effected" as it is cause by components wearing out in a manner unexpected.

If a pedal was sticking in a new car, something else if going on .. at least according to what this fellow was saying.

Ethically, they should tell customers that two recalls are in effect on new vehicles and to expect a notice. Customers should be told what it is, just so that they are ware of it.

There has been far too much undisclosed on this in the past, the pattern is thankfully being addressed by Toyota.

Some silly comment about residual .. a car with 170,000 miles .. what residual? While generally Honda`s and Toyota`s sell used for more money, those cars also were sold for a lot closer to MSRP then domestic brands. So I bought a Neon with an MSRP of just under $21,000, for $14,300. So the depreciation is in my pocket at the front end. Black book values now are very very low for all vehicles. Cars, are horrible investments, plain and simple. Take the bus and you will have a lot more money at the end of the day.


I'm simply amazed how some posters here continue to grant Toyota a free pass on how serious this problem is. For example, when GM launched a very large recall for tailgate strap replacements on over 1M pickup trucks, it was shouted from the roof tops by both the media and import loyalists how bad GM was and yet no one died. But with this Toyota problem, it's no big deal that over 16 people have died and some even accuse the owners of the affected vehicles of being stupid. I mean, your car or truck going WOT is no problem at all is it? Place the blame on Toyota for covering this up for years. Truly, that's blind loyalty if I ever saw it.


Its not a problem with a pedal or floormat, its a problem with the computer software.


Bought a 2010 highlander last month. Already put 2200 miles. Concerned about safety. Can I take it back? Does Honda have these recall problems??


I think they need to replace all these cars ..

We need to file a class action lawsuit

who agrees


I agree that you are a loser.

Have you guys ever been in a Toyota stuck accelerator incident while driving? I was, last fall, and it ain't fun. Fortunately I pulled into a apartment parking lot but thought I would hit the building. Standing on the brakes didn't seem to help. Turned off the ignition and breathed a sigh of relief. Then turned it on again and the accelerator was still racing. Turned it off and tried to figure out what to do. Turned it on again and the accelerating had stopped. This was a 2003 Corolla.


They need to replace these cars -- I had an accleration problem with my car and crashed... Toyota came out a year ago and said there was nothing wrong with the accelerator and now there is this massive recall ?? I don't want the car fixed ... I don't want the car at all or another Toyota for that matter.


IF, this does happen to you, DO NOT shut off the engine. You will lose power steering. Shift the transmission up one notch to neutral (N) and guide the car off the road on to the shoulder. The engine will be revving up and make a lot of noise, so expect this. THEN, turn the ignition key off and place the car in park. Call your significant other, family friend, ect. to pick you up after you call a tow truck. Have the vehicle towed to the nearest Toyota dealer. DO NOT attempt to re-start the car and drive it.


it happen to my Toyota (late in November) and we were so lucky there were no other cars on the road.We put it in neutral, but it was a scary incident.
AAA said the car was fine.We took out the car mat when that recall was announced.The car mat recall was definatly a coverup, and they would not admit any technical problems, even while knowing millions of peoples lives were in danger.They should have caught this WAY earlier.


First off, if the thing sticks USE COMMON SENSE PEOPLE!!!!! Put the shifter into neutral (the rev limiter will stop the motor from being damaged, if it revs that high) while you pull over, then shut it off.

Secondly, they are saying that there are 2 different gas pedals in the cars. One (in the japanese built cars) is made by nippon-denso and those pedals are fine. However, the cars that are built in the good ol US of A some use a pedal that is not a nippon-denso pedal, but instead made by a company in chicago, CTS. The CTS pedals are the ones that are screwing up. If you look at the gas pedal itself, the CTS pedals have a big square metal plate on the side of it by where the pedal assembly pivots. The denso pedals are all black. As of this point, none of the denso pedals are affected, which is why the japanese built cars (yaris, FJ Cruiser, Scions, 4runner, etc) are not affected by the recall.


what I should to do with my Toyota camry sedam 2007.. . If I bought the used car?


Call your local dealer to be sure they have the correct contact information for you. In the event your vehicle is affected they will have the correct information to mail out notices and such.

Judy Karren

Has anyone yet driven a "fixed" Toyota? I'm bringing in my 2010 Rav tomorrow to install the new part.


on recalls I was told we dont have a rental car service, I think is unfair , they made a mistake, and we have to pay for it. dont go to toyota of orange they dont treat you good, the ignored your coments. dont buy from toyota of orange


I took my camry in for the recall service. Now I think it is more of a safety issue then before


I read this board...hmmm. My Toyota Tacoma took off from a near dead stop while still in 4WD. I stopped short of a 270 foot drop off after hitting a solid concrete picnic table. It was all over in 35 feet. 1001, 1002 100??? OVER! The new brake override system doesn't engage until you hit 5mph. I would have killed everyone between myself and the picnic table before it engaged....

Mary Anne Thompson

My 2006 Camry took off twice and kept speeding up when I had it in cruise control. The 2nd time I went off the road hitting a tree sustaining 2 broken ribs and assorted other problems. Has this happened to anyone else? It only did this when in cruise control

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