Toyota mulling fix for 1.2 million Corolla, Matrix models due to stalling issue

Toyota told federal auto saftey regulators that the computer flaws in up to 1.2 million Corolla and Matrix models that can cause engine stalling does not pose ‘an unreasonable risk’to safety, though the company is considering how to go about addressing the issue.

Among the other issues facing Toyota, the NHTSA opened a probe this past November into 26 complaints of stalling engineds in 2006 Corollas and Matrixes. Though there were no reports of injuries or crashes, many complained of the engine being difficult to restart. Since November however, the number of relevant complaints has risen to 76 and include one fire.

Toyota told the NHTSA that the issue affected 2005-2007 Corolla and Matrix vehicles and that the stalling was due to physical faults in the production of the vehicle’s engine control units, which it blames on two of its suppliers.

If the NHTSA were to agree with Toyota’s assertion that the issue is not a safety one, Toyota would be free to take any number of steps short of a recall. Any action taken by Toyota would also apply to the 2005-2007 Pontiac Vibe, a mechnical twin to the Matrix, produced at the same California plant.

– By: Stephen Calogera

Source: Free Press