Page last updated at 15:17 GMT, Thursday, 28 January 2010

Toyota car recall hits US, Europe and China

Toyota Corolla
The popular Corolla is one of the models affected

Toyota has announced the recall of vehicles in the US, Europe and China over concerns about accelerator pedals getting stuck on floor mats.

The firm has announced plans to recall 1.1 million more cars in the US a day after saying it was suspending sales of eight popular US models.

According to an application to China's quality control office, it wants to recall 75,552 RAV4 vehicles there.

Toyota also announced 750 jobs could go at its Burnaston plant in the UK.

The positions would be lost before August.

"[Last year] was a tough year for Toyota Manufacturing UK," the carmaker said.

"This decision is related to production capacity and efficiency, not to production volumes."

Toyota said no decision had been taken about how the jobs would go, but added that it was not currently considering compulsory redundancies.

Investor concerns

Toyota wants to recall the RAV4 vehicles in China from 28 February.

The cars in question were manufactured between 19 March 2009 and 25 January 2010 in Tianjin, according to a notice on the website of the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People's Republic of China.

The specifics of the recall in Europe have yet to be decided.

Colin Hensley, general manager of Toyota's European operations, said the carmaker was trying to establish how many European models shared the parts used in the cars recalled in the US.

Last week, the world's largest carmaker recalled 2.3 million cars in the US with faulty pedals.

It has now recalled almost 8 million cars in the US in the past four months.

Last November, it recalled 4.2 million cars because of worries over pedals getting lodged under floor mats.

"Toyota's remedy plan is to modify or replace the accelerator pedals on the subject vehicles to address the risk of floor mat entrapment," the company said.

The latest recall affects five models in the US: the 2008-2010 Highlander and the 2009-2010 Corolla, Venza, Matrix and Pontiac Vibe.

Toyota shares fell a further 3.9% in Japan, after dropping 4.3% on Wednesday, as concerns about the impact of the recalls on the carmaker's financial health and reputation gripped investors.

"It is still uncertain how this recall problem will affect Toyota's profits. But investors are worried it could really pressure the company's overall earnings," said Masatoshi Sato at Mizuho Investors Securities.

Separately, Ford said it would be suspending production of a van made and sold in China that has an accelerator pedal made by the same firm at the centre of Toyota's investigations.

However, Ford said it had only been using the pedal in the Transit Classic model since December, with only 1,663 vehicles produced.


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