Washington Toyota Motor Corp. said Tuesday it will recall 3.8 million vehicles in the United States, the company’s largest-ever U.S. recall, to address problems with a removable floor mat that could cause accelerators to get stuck and lead to a crash.
The recall will involve popular models such as the Toyota Camry, the top-selling passenger car in America, and the Toyota Prius, the best-selling gas-electric hybrid.
Toyota said it was still working with officials with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to find a remedy to fix the problem and said owners could be notified about the recall as early as next week. Toyota spokesman Irv Miller said until the company finds a fix, owners should take out the removable floor mat on the driver’s side and not replace it.
“A stuck open accelerator pedal may result in very high vehicle speeds and make it difficult to stop a vehicle, which could cause a crash, serious injury or death,” Miller said.
Toyota and the government issued separate warnings to owners of Toyota and Lexus vehicles about the safety problems tied to the floor mats.
“This is an urgent matter,” Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement. “For everyone’s sake, we strongly urge owners of these vehicles to remove mats or other obstacles that could lead to unintended acceleration.”
The recall will affect 2007-2010 model year Toyota Camry, 2005-2010 Toyota Avalon, 2004-2009 Toyota Prius, 2005-2010 Tacoma, 2007-2010 Toyota Tundra, 2007-2010 Lexus ES350 and 2006-2010 Lexus IS250 and IS350.
Toyota’s previously largest U.S. recall was about 900,000 vehicles in 2005 to fix a steering issue. The company declined to say how many complaints it had received about the accelerator issue.
NHTSA said it had received reports of 102 incidents in which the accelerator may have become stuck on the Toyota vehicles involved.