Complaints emerge over Toyota brakes within Japan

16:38, February 03, 2010      

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The transport ministry in Japan said Wednesday that it had received 14 complaints over pedals in cars made by auto giant Toyota, as a crisis for the automaker that has already reached three continents looked set to widen.

The complaints were over a fault with breaks on the Toyota cars. A different fault with the accelerator on some models has led to a recall of over 4 million vehicles across the globe, and threatens to put a huge dent in both the profits and reputation of the automaker.

The complaints in Japan involve the automaker's new Prius hybrid car, which was Japans biggest-selling vehicle last year.

In the United States, the automaker announced that sales were down 15.8 percent in January, the first decrease for the automaker in four months.

Recalls of the cars have also taken place in Europe and China, and media worldwide are now focusing on the safety of the cars, as the Big Three automakers in the United States look to gain ground on the world's most advanced hybrid car manufacturer.

On Wednesday, U.S. transport minister Ray LaHood said Washington would be watching Toyota closely to make sure that all recall repairs were carried out thoroughly, and also looking for further defects in the cars.

In recent years, Toyota has emphasized cars that are more environmentally friendly in a bid to oust the United States from the position of top automaker.

Source: Xinhua
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