Toyota fined $32 mn over violating US vehicle safety norms

Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corporation will pay a penalty of $32.4 million to the US government in two different cases of product issues. The auto company failed to meet the terms laid down by the vehicle safety norms.

After adding this penalty, Toyota has so far been imposed $48.8 million as fines to be paid to the US government. The auto company faced a series of humiliations over serious defects in its vehicles. The latest fine will be the optimum could be levied under US legislation.

US transportation official announced late on Monday the decision to impose the fine on Toyota, confirmed later on.

Toyota recalled 55,000 cars to fix the floor mats issue in 2007, but two years later the lethal accident of a Lexus Sedan model again raised a serious concern over an outdated floor mats design. It was found that fixing floor mats was not enough and there was a greater need for paying attention to redesign of accelerator pedal in the vehicles.

Another case of breaching safety norms involved the issues with steering control in selective models of Toyota. The auto company had issued a statement in which it said that the issue was confined to vehicles in Japan, but later on similar problem surfaced in numerous Toyota vehicles in the US. The steering control defect led to a recall of about 1 million vehicles.

The auto major accepted that the recall of vehicles after detecting certain defects had tarnished its reputation especially when it was facing a stiff competition in the US from other Japanese and South Korean automobile companies.

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