Toyota is issuing yet another worldwide recall, this time for 270,000 Lexus and Crown models. According to the automaker, flawed engine components in the recalled vehicles could make them stall while in motion.
According to an Associated Press report, the recall involves 138,000 vehicles in the U.S., 91,903 in Japan, 15,000 in Europe, 10,000 in the Middle East, 6,000 in China, 4,000 in Canada, 3,704 in South Korea and 8,000 elsewhere. The vehicles, produced between July 2005 and August 2008, include Lexus models GS350, GS450h, GS460, IS350, LS460, LS600h, LS600hL and Crown models. Vehicles from the 2009 and 2010 model years are not affected.
Toyota said the engine problem resulted from a foreign substance being introduced during manufacturing of the valve springs. It is replacing the valve spring in the recalled vehicles.
Toyota has received about 200 complaints involving the engine problem, but there have been no reports of accidents, the Associated Press said.
According to a Bloomberg report, Toyota received complaints more than three years ago about engine problems. A Toyota spokesperson told Bloomberg that it decided to address the problem in August 2008 by altering the design of the valve spring and making it thicker. However the company didnâ€™t feel that a recall was necessary given the rarity of the problem at the time.
This has been the year of the recall for Toyota, which has seen its reputation for quality suffer amid numerous safety problems. Since last fall it has recalled more than 9 million cars worldwide because of faulty floor mats, sticking accelerator pedals, brake issues and other problems..
Earlier this year, Toyota agreed to pay a record $16.375 million fine levied by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for concealing information related to a January recall of 2.3 million vehicles for sticky accelerator pedals.
The company also faces more than 200 lawsuits resulting from the sticky accelerator and floor mat recalls.