Toyota Recall: CTS Sticky Pedal Investigation Snags Dodge Caliber
The AP [via Google] reports that NHTSA’s investigation of the pedals manufactured by CTS that were behind Toyota’s recent unintended acceleration recall has widened to include 2007 model-year Dodge Calibers. Dodge built 161,000 Calibers in the 2007 model-year, but according to Chrysler Group complaints of sticking accelerators only cover about 10,000 vehicles built between March and April of 2006… even though all 2007 model-year vehicles were built with CTS pedals. So what’s the difference between vehicles made in that five-week period and the rest of the 2007 model-year? According to Chrysler spokesfolks:
We have data that is telling us that there were a certain amount of complaints during that time period
Though Chrysler claims to be cooperating with NHTSA’s investigation, it refused to reveal to the AP what other vehicles it may have built with the CTS pedals. NHTSA says it notified Chrysler of its investigation of Calibers on April 23, based on five complaints it received of gas pedal sticking on Calibers. According to the report:
Four of the Caliber drivers reported they found small parts of the gas pedal known as bushings on the driver side floor. Without the bushings, it is possible for the pedals to become stuck, according to NHTSA
Chrysler says all Calibers are equipped with brake override systems, designed to prevent unintended acceleration. More on this investigation as it breaks. [Hat Tip: Robert Walter]
"More on this investigation as it breaks." http://www.instantrimshot.com/
BTW, from the Boston Globe: http://www.boston.com/business/articles/2010/04/27/federal_agency_to_examine_toyota_in_fatal_crash/?page=1 NHTSA is currently investigating the Toyota Highlander which sped out of control last fall (IIRC December) killing its driver, a 63 y/o Professor Harvard School of Public Health, his 61 y/o wife, and his 94 y/o mother ... acc. to witnesses, prior to the crash, the vehicle was behaving properly in traffic until it sped-up passed other vehicles, crossed the center-line and hit a Malibu in the opposing lane killing its driver (who had just dropped his Suburban off at the dealer for service.) It was not yet known if the vehicle, subject to the ePedal recall announced in January, had been reported as having any previous problem with the pedal. Interesting quote from the article: "Peterborough police Sergeant Michael Chapdelaine said his team was in the “early’’ days of its investigation into the crash when, after learning of Toyota’s brewing troubles, they began to suspect [the] car might have accelerated unexpectedly ... Nor could they retrieve any electronic data that might have shown if the car malfunctioned because investigators couldn’t get the proper codes from Toyota."
I assume 2006 is a typo? The sticky pedal cars were built in 3/4 '07 ? On that assumption, it's interesting that the pedal problem with the Caliber is confined to cars built in March and April of '07. CTS could look through it's logs and see if the particular machines used were having problems in 3/4 '07. That might lead to finding out why some pedals stick while others never do. Dare we hope that at least one cause of SUA might actually be explained?
Tim, The issue is a "possibility of the pedal getting stuck" not unintended acceleration because Chrysler is a step ahead of Toyota on this one, as stated in this article: "Chrysler says all Calibers are equipped with brake override systems, designed to prevent unintended acceleration."