Calm prevails, for now, at Charlotte area Toyota dealers during recall
Toyota continues with its recall of about 2.3 million vehicles that might have a problem with accelerator pedals sticking. The Japanese automaker said this week it will install a part to the accelerator pedals of the recalled models to keep this from happening. WFAE's Simone Orendain has been checking in with some Charlotte area dealers on their efforts to make the fix. Mark: Simone, what have you found? S: A mixed bag, actually. The two dealerships I went to during the lunch hour in the north and northeast said they just got the accelerator part today. But three dealers I called, in Gastonia, Matthews and South Charlotte all said they had not yet received the part and it would arrive anywhere from next week to the end of the month. All of these dealers are notifying their customers once the parts have arrived. Mark: At the local dealerships where they do have the parts to make the repairs, what's it like in terms of bringing in cars? S: These two dealerships are Toyota of Lake Norman and Toyota of Concord and they were pretty quiet, actually. This was probably within an hour or so of CNN flashing the headline of what Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, when he told the Congressional panel he would tell Toyota owners to "stop driving it and get it to a Toyota a dealer asap." Of course he kind of backpedalled afterwards when he told reporters it was a misstatement. Instead he said he would "encourage owners of any recalled models to go to their dealer soon." This was around the time that that statement came out. At Toyota of Lake Norman, no one wanted to talk on tape, or actually the service manager didn't want to talk period, he referred me to US headquarters' PR. But one service worker said some people were calling in and he said he didn't blame them taking this precaution, for wanting to do that. Now, the manager at Toyota of Concord didn't talk on tape either but he said they'd so far looked at and added pieces to around 10 cars. He really wanted to emphasize that no one was coming in with their hands in the air and panicking about this. The Concord dealership was receiving quite a few calls while I was there. Service workers were pretty calm as they were talking to people who were calling in. Mark: Simone, these are obviously frustrating times for Toyota dealers, are they showing some of that frustration? S: Well, not really. As I was saying they were pretty calm over there. The service workers were very patiently talking with customers and really letting them know that they were going to ship them out - by the way I actually saw a couple trying to buy a car, in the lot. Mark: Ok. WFAE's Simone Orendain checking in with local Toyota dealers, thanks.