By on February 1, 2010

In case you are reading TTAC before watching the “Today Show,” turn it on. According to the Wall Street Journal, “Jim Lentz, the executive in charge of Toyota’s U.S. sales arm, is scheduled to appear on NBC’s “Today Show” Monday morning, a Toyota spokesman confirmed. Mr. Lentz is expected to lay out a timetable for shipping repair parts to dealers, as well as for resuming sales of the eight models whose sales were suspended last week and for restarting production and shipment of new vehicles that are free of the gas-pedal problems, according to people briefed on the plans.”

And here is today’s media schedule according to the Nikkei [sub]:

Toyota will release a statement at 6:30 a.m. EST Monday followed by the distribution of a video (shown here,) the company said in a media advisory.

At 11:00 a.m. Monday, Toyota will hold a media conference call.

Dealers briefed on the plan confirmed to the Nikkei that the fix for the 2.3m vehicles recalled in January is the metal shim that will be inserted into the pedal. The WSJ says that Toyota has told dealers that it can produce as many as 120,000 of the shims a day.

Repairs for 5.4 million Toyota and Lexus vehicles that were recalled late last year over concerns that the floor mats could entrap the gas pedal will include trimming the gas pedal, modifying the floor pan and installing a new braking system to ensure the brakes override the accelerator when both pedals are depressed, says the Nikkei.

The Wall Street Journal figures the recall could cost Toyota around $1b, say the cost could “be much larger unless the world’s largest car maker acts swiftly to contain the fallout.”

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5 Comments on “This Morning, All Your Toyota Questions Will Be Answered. Hopefully...”

  • avatar
    Cammy Corrigan

    The next few months will be interesting for Toyota. I’m expecting the following:

    January and February will chalk up market share losses for Toyota and gains for Detroit. Stock price will stay steady as the market believe Toyota will pull back. Toyota will then launch a marketing offensive and possibly announce an overhaul of their quality control department.

    6 months from now, I’d like to see the market share figures for the car makers.

  • avatar

    The shim, trim and mat stuff are straw men for the software glitch, which will be “fixed” by the brake pedal override. (IMHO)

  • avatar

    As I interpret these facts:

    2.3M unit recall (CTS pedal assy):

    Contact between flanks of sensor tower and adjacent surfaces of accl pedal lever.

    Potential contributing factors:
    – tight packaging of internal features;
    – tolerance stack errors;
    – variations in manufactured dimensions (this happens when parts formed in multiple cavities are randomly assembled. (Note: it remains to be seen whether CTS uses >1 cavity/sub-component);
    – compression/wear of plastic hard-stop features betw pedal & housing;
    – humidity-induced swelling with subsequent:
    a) tolerance changes in components,
    b) clearance changes between components,
    c) unintended, undesired contact between components,
    d) increased TTR (torque-to-rotate) of pedal lever in assy,
    e) jamming (“wedging”?) of lever slot against flanks of sensor tower,
    – insufficient lubricant betw tower & slot, thus increased stick-slip potential,
    – contact betw tower & slot leading to increased friction over-time due to debris generated by galling (debris could remain in place due to residual attachment, static electricity, or lubricant or moisture on surface);
    – inadequate spring force to clear jamming/wedging condition;

    Insertion of metal shim above/below return spring sub-assy by dealer service personnel.

    Effect of Remedy:
    1. Increase spring force beyond minimum necessary to clear jamming/wedging effect;
    2. (Possibly) Induce coil-on-coil contact at full pedal travel to act as the pedal travel limiter? (Comment: If true, this will cause very different force flow paths thru components and structure when pedal reaches its end stops; I hope this is well tested.)

    Time to Implement:
    – mfg. capa for service part: 120k pc/dy
    – time to produce all service parts: ~20 days
    – time to install??
    (Note: typical recalls only ever return ~75% of the affected population to dealer. If this holds true, we will hear of SUA accidents for quite some time due to nearly 500k units never being returned for remediation. That said, I expect the publicity receved by this campaign will net a repair rate >> 75%.)

    5.4M unit recall (floor mat-induced pedal entrapment):
    – trim pedal, (hopefully no sharp edges)
    – modify floor pan, (how do they do this? hammer it down? build it up? also, carpet is made with form to fit floor pan contours. what is plan to get carpet to fit new contours? screw or glue it down? need to understand this mod better!)
    – install new braking system to ensure brakes override accl when both pedals are depressed (override can mean different things, does it mean a s/w override, better brake hardware, or both?)

  • avatar

    CBS/ConsumerReports did a test on a Toyota and a VW Jetta. The Jetta cut the fuel supply when the brake was pressed and the Toyota did not.

    I think all VWs have this safety feature. Not sure which other manufacturers have it and which don’t. Glad I own a Jetta.

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