Lexus ES 350 & IS 250/350 Recall Announced

Lexus ES 350 Floor Mat

Toyota has announced the recall of the Lexus ES 350 & IS 250/350 models to have their accelerator pedals reshaped and/or replaced.

This recall is to be a permanent solution to the risk of unintended acceleration, no matter what floor mat is being used. Starting in early 2010, dealerships will be equipped to reshape the affected pedals by “shaving” a 3/4 inch from the existing pedal, followed by a brand new pedal in April 2010. In the case of the ES 350, the floor surface will also be reshaped.

Both affected Lexus models will be receiving a new brake override system that will cut engine power if both the accelerator and brake pedals are pushed simultaneously.

If you’re affected by this recall, I suggest reading the full press release after the jump.

Toyota Announces Details of Remedy to Address Potential Accelerator Pedal Entrapment

Torrance, Calif., November 25, 2009 – – Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. (TMS) announced today details of the vehicle-based remedy to address the root cause of the potential risk for floor mat entrapment of accelerator pedals in certain Toyota and Lexus models. Toyota issued a consumer safety advisory on September 29 on this issue and has, as an interim measure, commenced the mailing of safety notices to certain Toyota and Lexus owners on October 30.

The models involved are: 2007 to 2010 MY (model year) Camry, 2005 to 2010 MY Avalon, 2004 to 2009 MY Prius, 2005 to 2010 MY Tacoma, 2007 to 2010 MY Tundra, 2007 to 2010 MY ES350, 2006 to 2010 MY IS250, and 2006 to 2010 MY IS 350.

The specific measures of the vehicle-based remedy are as follows:

1. The shape of the accelerator pedal will be reconfigured to address the risk of floor mat entrapment, even when an older-design all-weather floor mat or other inappropriate floor mat is improperly attached, or is placed on top of another floor mat.  For the ES350, Camry, and Avalon models involved, the shape of the floor surface underneath will also be reconfigured to increase the space between the accelerator pedal and the floor.

2. Vehicles with any genuine Toyota or Lexus accessory all-weather floor mat will be provided with newly-designed replacement driver- and front passenger-side all-weather floor mats.

In addition, as a separate measure independent of the vehicle-based remedy, Toyota will install a brake override system onto the involved Camry, Avalon, and Lexus ES 350, IS350 and IS 250 models as an extra measure of confidence. This system cuts engine power in case of simultaneous application of both the accelerator and brake pedals.

Toyota is in the process of completing development of these actions and for the ES350, Camry, and Avalon will start notifying owners of the involved vehicles via first-class mail by the end of this year.  The remedy process regarding the other five models will occur on a rolling schedule during 2010.

Dealers will be trained and equipped to make the necessary modifications to these models starting at the beginning of 2010.  Initially, dealers will be instructed on how to reshape the accelerator pedal for the repair.  As replacement parts with the same shape as the modified pedal become available, they will be made available to dealers for the repair, beginning around April 2010.  Customers who have had the remedy completed will have the opportunity to receive a new pedal if they desire.

In the meantime, owners of the involved vehicles are asked to take out any removable driver’s floor mat and not replace it with any other floor mat until they are notified of the vehicle-based remedy, as notified in the consumer safety advisory and the interim notice.

The brake override system will be made standard equipment throughout the Toyota and Lexus product lines starting with January 2010 production of ES350 and Camry and is scheduled to be incorporated into new production of most models by the end of 2010.

The safety of our owners and the public is our utmost concern and Toyota has and will continue to thoroughly investigate and take appropriate measures to address any defect trends that are identified.

Owners who have further questions are asked to visit or  or contact the Toyota Customer Experience Center at 1-800-331-4331 or Lexus Customer Assistance at 1-800-255-3987.



  1. aw… will the system still be clever enough to let us do a burnout? I know… safety first, and I feel bad to those who were involved in an incident related to this recall, but come on… especially the IS 350, which might lose its power pride over its competitors.

    Also, does this mean that the LFA’s pedals will have to be dealt with?! (LFA pedals are connected to the floor) In a way, this is kinda ridiculous. Why should there be a problem in the first place? By saying that, I am accusing Lexus of trying to hide something - I bet there is another issue that they’ll be trying to fix when the vehicles are recalled.

    At least the override system works in the Bimmers - either they’re clever enough that heel-toeing and burnouts aren’t a problem, or they’re not doing their job.

  2. i’m actually happy, this gives us a reason to visit Keyes!

  3. A family member in Florida has a 2005 LS (I think it’s a 430) and it has done this twice to her in the last month, and she almost got killed the first time as she went flying across three lanes of traffic.  She reported it and had it checked out by the incompetent mechanics at her closest Lexus dealer and they just ignored her, saying her car wasn’t part of the recall.  Part of the recall or not, they should be checking this out.  Maybe the LS series needs to be included in this.  But if these dealerships are ignoring their drivers and not reporting that consumers are coming in with these complaints, how will they know?  I guess it will take another death first before they do something productive about it.  I just hope it’s not one of my family members…nor one of yours.

  4. @ConcernedDriver: I’m glad everyone is safe! My suggestion would be to contact Lexus USA with your concerns.

  5. @WorldofLuxury: I’m sure the LFA will not be affected by this recall. LOL

  6. I don’t see it.  Have spent lotsa time fiddling w my ES floormat (s)and find it difficult ho “accidentally” get a mat on top of the pedal.  Yes, w the “all-weather” mat on top of the carpeted mat, the metal “Hook” doesn’t quite secure BOTH mats.  But not long ago, there were no holes, no hooks, no nothing.  Ya washed yer mats, then loosely threw them into the car, w a quick “fittng.”

  7. @Denali:
    The confusion is what I’m afraid of. I don’t want all future vehicles to have biased (lacking in info) black boxes that report to the dealer or the government what happened. The unintended accelerations might have been a subconscious mistake of the drivers’ or a flaw in many Toyota vehicles, such as the RAV4. Toyota has ignored transmission problems before, and because of their recent plague of recalls (stupid frames that rust), I bet Toyota took advantage of the alleged floormats as their scapegoat. And of course, I’m assuming.

  8. @krew:
    I can see that you’re rebelling. The IS ad right below the LFA banner above is also a place for a Buick LaCrosse ad, which competes with the ES 350 - wow, what a threesome. LOL

    I gotta say, though, GM’s efforts with its Chinese partners have made a beautiful car. Lexus better watch out. The German made Buick Regal is also a winner. I hope Lexus doesn’t tighten up the competition by simply making a car that is “pretty good looking” on the outside, is slightly more intuitive on the inside, and has a slightly better quality and fit-and-finish.

  9. @WorldofLuxury: I’m not rebelling, I’m engaging in the free-market to see how it goes. wink

  10. @Denali: I’ve tried the same thing with the same result.

  11. I would like to say that in August of 2009. I was involved in a horrible one car accident.  I had the Lexus 2008 Es 350. I was making a left turn out of a parking lot and all of a sudden my car went totally out of control, taking me 550 feet back through on coming traffic and through the parking lot I left, I was able to avoid power boxes and other things but I took out small palm trees and and went 30 ft air born before I hit a huge palm tree head on at 50 miles per hour.  The whole time pressing breaks as hard as I could. I told the police officer my breaks gave out. I was taken to the hospital by ambulance and the officer met me there to tell me my breaks were fine, he never saw any break marks just acceleration marks. He asked me if I was on prescription drugs (meaning I must be insane ) My car was totaled and it was only 3 months old. I got a new 2009 SAME MODEL but it was 2 months after my accident that I started hearing the horror stories of the gas pedal.  Now Lexus is telling me it is still the floor mats, there is no gas throttle part for my car . I did not have a floor mat on the drivers side. The Es350 was on the recall list but now its not due to not enough evidence that the throttle is sticking on its own. All I can say is beware and throw your car into N if you see this happen and hold the ignition switch in for a couple of seconds and it will kill the car.
    I don’t get it because the Lexus is a glorified Camry , but the Camry’s need a part to fix the gas throttle but the Lexus doesn’t. I think it will take more deaths from the Lexus before it needs the new part.gasp

  12. @Rhonda: Acceleration marks? Like those 11s made by burnouts? Hmm… makes sense. A simple little burnout would involve some braking and lots of accelerating.

    Anyway, I believe that Lexus doubts its Japanese supplier has any flaws, and Toyota is trying to blame the CTS company that made the pedals. I hope we get to know the truth eventually.

  13. The thing is right after I had this accident , I bought another Lexus because I love the car so much, but it was two months after the accident, I learned of this problem.  I wish I had the black box read at the time and I wish I would of went with the Infinity because I’m really afraid to drive my car now. I knew I was on my brakes and if it weren’t for me hitting things and going over curves etc , I would of been going faster. The officer gave me a ticket for failure to stay in my lane LOL. I know Lexus is denying this faulty issue.

  14. Rhonda, I am very sympathetic to your story and how frustrating it must feel for driver error to be assigned blame instead of mechanical/electronic failure.  I previously owned a new Chevrolet corvette for 2 years without problem when it suddenly and inexplicably started to rev at full throttle when I started the engine in my garage. The driver information console readout would say “reduce acceleration, fuel mixture too rich. . .” even though I never touched the gas pedal, and it was in fact not depressed.  Fortunately, the transmission was always in park when this occurred. I doubt that brakes would stop a muscle car at full acceleration.  At the dealership, it took several diagnostic runs over several days before the service manager notified me that an error code finally showed up in the computer module that controls acceleration.  Although the part would take 5 days to arrive, the car’s condition was considered by GM too dangerous for me to take the car home until it was repaired.  So I am concerned that the problems that Toyota is encountering with unintended acceleration are not floormats, or stuck gas pedals, but more serious problems with electronic throttle control. I’m concerned that Toyota may be going after the wrong fix.

  15. Thank you and I agree with you swakyaby, the floor mat blame is a joke in my opinion and Im really nervous driving the car now. And yes , it was kind of hard to stay in my lane when the car had other ideas. I hope it wont take them long to figure out the real problem. I have two more years left on my lease.

  16. Unfortunately, with all the attention this recall is getting, some of the comments are getting out of hand, and I’m going to have to shut it down.

    Again, owners who have further questions are asked to visit or  or contact the Toyota Customer Experience Center at 1-800-331-4331 or Lexus Customer Assistance at 1-800-255-3987.