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Toyota claims to have remedied "pedal entrapment" problem

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As the sales suspension enters its fourth day, Toyota claims to have found a remedy to the gas pedal problem. At the same time, Ford has halted production of vehicles in China made with a Toyota gas pedal.

Things just getting worse for Toyota even though it said it has identified the gas "pedal entrapment" problem that has impacted 2.3 million vehicles recalled in the U.S.

Toyota engineers and executives reportedly met yesterday with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to discuss a fix to the problem, according to a story in the Detroit News that quoted Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood..

"Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America (TEMA) has also been working closely with our pedal supplier CTS on a revised design that effectively remedies the problem. These pedals are now in full production at CTS to support Toyota’s needs.  At the same time, we continue to work with CTS to test effective pedal modifications for existing vehicles on the road that will be available to our customers as quickly as possible," Toyota said in a press statement.

Toyota did not say when then the unprecedented suspension of sales for eight of its models would be lifted. It did say it is in the process of recalling vehicles impacted by the stuck accelerator problem and that customers of those vehicles should call 1-800-331-4331 for information.

Ford, which yesterday reported a $2.7 billion profit for 2009, has halted production of its diesel Transit Classic commercial vehicle in China, according to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ). The vehicle, a joint venture between Ford and Jiangling Motors Co., uses a gas pedal made by Toyota, the WSJ said.

The government has said it will launch a probe into the problem to determine who what and when they knew it.

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John Dodge

Contributing Editor

Contributing Editor John Dodge has written for the Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, PC Week (now eWeek), EDN, Design News, Electronic Business, Bio-IT World, Health-IT World, Lowell Sun, Haverhill Gazette and Newburyport Daily News. He is based in Massachusetts. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure