The statement from federal auto regulators effectively disproves Toyota Motor Corp. claim that the carmaker voluntarily stopped selling the vehicles affected by the latest vehicle recall. Toyota was actually legally required to stop selling the eight models recalled last week. Sales of these models were halted after it was revealed that there still is no fix found for the issue on "sticky acceleration pedals."
The impact is great as those eight models accounted for almost 60% of its US sales last year. Toyota had actually begun looking at the issue of sticky pedals in 2007.
David Strickland, the new administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said that Toyota's decision to halt sales "was an aggressive one and was the legally and morally correct thing to do."
On the other hand, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood told Chicago radio station WGN that the government asked Toyota to stop selling the vehicles.
LaHood said with all certainty that the reason Toyota decided to do the recall and to stop manufacturing was because the government asked it to.
Toyota spokesman, John Hansen, insists that the company had taken the step voluntarily. Strickland declined to address why Toyota didn't stop selling the vehicles five days earlier when it announced the recall as it was legally required to do.