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Toyota recalls SUVs for acceleration glitch

By Peter Valdes-Dapena, senior writer

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Toyota Motor Sales has announced plans to recall about 50,000 Toyota Sequoia SUVs because of a problem with their Vehicle Stability Control systems that can cause the vehicles to hesitate or slow down at low speeds.

The SUVs involved were all manufactured early in the 2003 model year. As part of the planned recall, Toyota (TM) will upgrade the VSC software.

2003 Toyota Sequoia

"In vehicles without the upgrade, the VSC system could, in limited situations, activate at low speed (approximately 9 mph) for a few seconds after acceleration from a stopped position and, as a result, the vehicle may not accelerate as quickly as the driver expects," Toyota said in a written announcement.

Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), also commonly called Electronic Stability Control (ESC), is a computerized system that controls the brakes and accelerator to help maintain vehicle control in abrupt maneuvers.

Toyota fixed this problem on vehicles coming off assembly lines later in the 2003 model year. Toyota also issued a "technical service bulletin" to dealers around that time, the automaker said, and dealers have been fixing vehicles since then as individual owners requested it. About half of the vehicles covered under the planned recall have already had the problem fixed.

There have been no reported injuries or crashes as a result of this problem, the automaker said.

Toyota will begin mailing letters to owners of the affected vehicles in late May, the automaker said. If an owner had previously paid to have the problem fixed, Toyota may reimburse the cost of the repair. To top of page

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