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Toyota Gets Accelerator Recall Right

When news first surfaced that Toyota was planning to shrink the accelerator pedals in many 2007-2010 Toyotas, we cried foul. While making the gas pedals smaller would likely help avoid a scenario where the accelerator would get stuck under the driver’s floormat, the fact is cutting down the pedal is only a half-measure – the only way to cure the problem is to reprogram the computer so that it includes a brake-to-idle failsafe.

Toyota's official recall includes new gas pedals for all and brake-to-idle failsafe upgrade for some.

Toyota's official recall includes new gas pedals for all and brake-to-idle failsafe upgrade for some.

For those who don’t know, “brake-to-idle failsafe” is a computer control that cancels accelerator inputs while the brakes are being depressed. Therefore, with brake-to-idle failsafe it’s impossible for a stuck accelerator to cause an accident, because one touch of the brakes tells the engine computer to ignore the gas pedal. It’s a simple and idiot-proof countermeasure the will overcome any stuck accelerator, and all it requires is a programming updated to a vehicles ECU (engine control unit).

When Toyota officially announced their plans to re-size accelerator pedals on many newer Toyota’s today, they also announced that they would be re-programing the Camry, Avalon, ES350, IS250, and IS350 to include the brake-idle failsafe system.

This is great news for Toyota owners and a great example of Toyota doing the right thing. Good work, Toyota!

Toyota Frame Rust Recall Only A Partial Fix

UPDATE: As of May 2010, Toyota has extended the warranty on 2000-2003 Tundra frames. Please see Toyota Tundra Frame Replacement Program for more details.

Today, Toyota has recalled 110,000 1st generation Toyota Tundras due to frame rust concerns. Specifically, this recall requires dealers to inspect the rear cross member and rear brake line mounts on 2000-2003 Tundras for significant rust. If dealers find that the frame’s rear cross member or brake line mount has significant rust, the corroded parts will be replaced as soon as possible.

Toyota has recalled 2000-2003 Tundras over frame rust concerns. Hopefully, this is just a first step.

Toyota has recalled 2000-2003 Tundras over frame rust concerns. Hopefully, this is just a first step.

Toyota’s recall is great news for owners of 2000-2003 Tundras with frame rust, but it is only a half measure. Toyota will need to do more than replace one piece of the frame to completely satisfy 1st generation Tundra owners.

Toyota’s official announcement states that:

2010 Tundra Check Engine Light Issue and Fix

UPDATE – TOYOTA HAS ISSUED A TSB FOR THIS ISSUE

Please view 2010 Tundra VVT-i TSB for the full details

The following post is no longer correct.

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If you found this post as a result of an internet search, your day might have been going a little something like this:

I have just bought a 2010 Tundra and only had it for 5 days before the check engine light came on. It didn

Toyota Tundra Frame Supplier Dana Off The Hook, No Rust Fix Yet

UPDATE: As of May 2010, Toyota has extended the warranty on 2000-2003 Tundra frames. Please see Toyota Tundra Frame Replacement Program for more details.

While this is not the news that the owners of Tundras with frame rust were hoping for, Toyota seems to be moving in positive direction in regards to frame rust complaints on first-gen Tundras. Before, Toyota seemed to blame frame supplier Dana for this issue. Now, it seems that Toyota has determined Dana is not responsible for frame rust problems on the first-gen Tundra.

This is an interesting distinction that, when combined with other facts, could indicate Toyota will take action…but it’s still very early.

Tundra frame rust.

Tundra frame rust.

According to a story in the Automotive News, Toyota seems to believe that:

  1. Frame supplier Dana is not the source of the rust problem.
  2. NHTSA is likely to expand their investigation of Tundra frame rust to a full engineering analysis.

Much of this is based on statement by Toyota spokesman Brian Lyons, who is also the main point of contact at Toyota for the unintended acceleration issue.

Here are the statements made by Lyons to the Automotive News:

10 Features and Improvements Needed On the Next Generation Tundra

Toyota typically redesigns their vehicles on a 5 year cycle, meaning that the next generation Tundra is due out in just a couple of years. We’ve been told that a diesel Tundra isn’t on the to-do list anytime before 2012 (not until the truck market “recovers” – whatever that means), and that hybrid and HD Tundras still seem to be a few years off (think 2015).

Toyota should copy the Ram Box feature on the next-generation Tundra.

Toyota should copy the Ram Box feature on the next-generation Tundra.

However, there are going to be some enhancements in the next-gen truck. We don’t know what all of those enhancements will be, but here are some suggestions for features and changes that Toyota should include in the next-gen Tundra (feel free to comment to add to the list).

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