Page last updated at 16:24 GMT, Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Toyota car recall may cost $2bn

Toyota Corolla
The Corolla is one of the models affected - but problems are rare

Toyota Motors says its massive vehicle recall could cost it up to $2bn (£1.25bn) in lost output and sales.

The carmaker is in the process of recalling millions of vehicles that are potentially prone to uncontrolled acceleration.

Toyota said the wide-ranging vehicle check might spread from the US and Europe to include the Middle East, Latin America and Africa.

It said 180,000 potentially affected cars had been sold in these regions.

It has identified eight models as potentially at risk, but stresses that very few are actually faulty.

Stuck pedal

Last week, Toyota, the largest car maker in the world, said it was recalling up to 1.8 million cars across Europe, including about 220,000 in the UK, following a fault which meant the accelerator pedal potentially could stick.

It has also recalled 2.3 million cars in the US in the past four months for the same problem.

Separately, the company has also recalled more than five million vehicles in the US for another problem, whereby the accelerator pedal can get trapped under the floor mat.

Sales hit

The models suspected of having defects include the Yaris, the Corolla and the RAV4 sports utility vehicle.

The sales forecast is something that we're extremely worried about
Shinichi Sasaki, Toyota

The recall of millions of vehicles may force the company - which is the world's largest car maker - to cut its 2010 sales forecasts.

In the first public comment from an executive at Toyota's head office in Japan, the company's executive in charge of quality said he was expecting a sales hit from the recall.

"The sales forecast is something that we're extremely worried about," executive vice-president Shinichi Sasaki told a news conference.

Toyota has an advice line for UK customers. Its number is 0800 1388 744.

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