Toyota will be fined the maximum penalty of $17.4 million for the second time since 2010, for failing to report automobile defects in a timely manner. In June of this year, Toyota announced a recall of over one hundred and fifty thousand 2010 Lexus RX350 and 2010 Lexus RX450H vehicles for problems with floor mats that could interfere with the accelerator pedal. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Toyota was contacted in May about a trend of floor mat pedal entrapment’s but it took the automobile manufacturer a month before they reported they were aware of 63 alleged incidents and said they would launch the recall. Federal law requires automakers to notify the agency within five business days of determining that a safety defect exists and to conduct a recall.
Toyota said they agreed to the settlement without admitting any violation of its U.S. safety obligations in order to avoid a time consuming dispute and to focus on their commitment with NHTSA to keep drivers safe.