By Mark Memmott
Saying it has "developed and rigorously tested a solution," Toyota just released some details on how it plans to fix sticky gas pedals on 4.2 million cars and trucks it has recalled.
According to Toyota: "Parts to reinforce the pedals are already being shipped for use by dealers, and dealer training is under way. Many Toyota dealers will work extended hours to complete the recall campaign as quickly and conveniently as possible, some even staying open 24 hours a day."
More details are posted here.
Toyota also released this video statement from Jim Lentz, president and chief operating officer of Toyota Motor Sales USA, who begins by telling customers, "I want to sincerely apologize to Toyota owners":
The vehicles involved include:
-- Certain 2009-2010 RAV4
-- Certain 2009-2010 Corolla
-- 2009-2010 Matrix
-- 2005-2010 Avalon
-- Certain 2007-2010 Camry
-- Certain 2010 Highlander
-- 2007-2010 Tundra
-- 2008-2010 Sequoia
Update at 3:15 p.m. ET. All Things Considered co-host Melissa Block spoke with Lentz this afternoon. What should a driver do if a gas pedal gets stuck? Said Lentz -- Put both feet on the break, press hard, shift the transmission into neutral, and pull off the road:
Much more from Melissa's conversation with Lentz will be on today's edition of ATC. Click here to find an NPR station near you that broadcasts the show. Later, the interview, as aired, will be posted here.
Update at 8:30 a.m. ET. Earlier on Morning Edition, NPR's Brian Naylor talked with host Renee Montagne about the news. As he says, Congress is starting to ask questions -- including, where was the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as the problem grew?
Update at 8:15 a.m. ET. Here's another report from NPR's Frank Langfitt, about the solution Toyota has devised. And, as Frank says, Toyota argues it has not dragged its feet in offering a fix:Update at 7:05 a.m. ET. NPR's Frank Langfitt called the newsroom a few minutes ago with this report:
As Frank says, the small part that is going to be sent to dealers is designed to eliminate friction that has been causing the sticking problem. With more than 2 million vehicles affected just in the U.S., though, "it's going to take time" to get them all fixed, Frank notes. One dealer he interviewed estimated that each of her franchises could "do about 100 cars a day."