Toyota Motor Corp. today said about 270,000 vehicles sold worldwide, including luxury Lexus sedans, have faulty engines, but the company did not say whether it would recall the automobiles.
The world’s biggest automaker said the defective engines could stall while the vehicles were moving.
Of the 270,000 vehicles, some 180,000 were sold overseas and the rest in Japan. They include luxury Lexus sedans and popular Crown models.
Kyodo News agency and Fuji TV – without providing sources – said Toyota would recall 270,000 vehicles. Toyota spokeswoman Ririko Takeuchi would not say if the company would issue a recall.
Toyota has been working to patch up its reputation after more than 8 million vehicles were recalled worldwide over reports of unintended acceleration and other defects.
US authorities slapped Toyota with a record US$16.4 million (NZ$24m) fine for acting too slowly on those recalls. Toyota dealers have repaired millions of vehicles, but the automaker still faces more than 200 lawsuits tied to accidents, the lower resale value of Toyota vehicles and the drop in the company’s stock.
In the aftermath of the recalls, Congress is considering an upgrade to auto safety laws to toughen potential penalties against automakers, give the US government more powers to demand a recall and push car companies to meet new safety standards.
Toyota said last week it will recall 17,000 Lexus luxury hybrids after testing showed that fuel can spill during a rear-end crash.