With Congress already investigating a possible Toyota unintended acceleration cover-up, the NHTSA has decided that it should probably be getting a piece of the action, and has invoked its statutory power to request documents relating to when Toyota learned of the defects involved in its recent gas pedal recall and how it reacted to them. Federal law requires that manufacturers notify the NHTSA within five days of discovering a safety defect, reports the Wall Street Journal [sub]. The WSJ [sub] also notes that Toyota is offering to disclose new details about its crisis response task force (which reportedly includes “outside quality experts”), as the world’s largest automaker struggles to respond to a rash of recalls that has affected over 8m vehicles worldwide and will cost the company at least $2b. CEO Akio Toyoda will hold his third recall-related press conference in two weeks on Wednesday evening to disclose these details and more on the company’s plans to boost testing and transparency. According to yet another WSJ [sub] report, those measures are said to include less reliance on computer modeling in vehicle design, improved consumer feedback capabilities and more stringent testing of supplier-designed parts.
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