Toyota issues defense against accelerator pedal misinformation

A Toyota press announcement responds to recent critics who equated a late November, 2010, technical service bulletin with another recall for accelerator pedal problems. While it displays a sensitivity to the issue, the Toyota response explains the nature and intention of the technical service bulletin in question.

Toyota must feel stung by recent press reports that at least hint that the auto company is still fumbling its response to accelerator-pedal concerns. That's the implication from a December 1, 2010 press release titled “Facts Regarding Recent Technical Service Bulletin for Toyota Camry and Avalon,” issued by Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A.

The announcement states that Toyota is providing “facts to clarify and prevent potential misinformation.”

At issue is a November 30, 2010 technical service bulletin (TSB) issued by Toyota to dealers. The bulletin instructs technicians on how to repair two specific nuts that are welded to Camry and Avalon bodies – if those nuts should become damaged during accelerator pedal repair. Toyota's press announcement calls that possibility “unlikely.”

In the release, Toyota offers an explanation of why the TSB was deemed necessary. “Since repair of the weld nuts is an extremely rare repair, the information is not included in the repair manual and the purpose of a TSB is to provide such information as needed,” the company stated. Toyota noted that the service bulletin followed inquiries from “a few technicians.”

What's more, the company announced, “no customer vehicles on the road are affected.”

“Suggestions that this TSB was issued to resolve customer complaints about accelerator pedal feel after the recall or that this TSB is a recall are wrong,” Toyota stated in the press release.

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Toyota has had a lot of troubles lately and things got worse when Japan was devastated with an earthquake and a tsunami...