Lexus Stops Selling New SUV over Safety Concerns

By Editors on April 13, 2010 2:57 PM

Lexus wasted little time this time.

On the same day Consumer Reports announced it was slapping a "Don't Buy: Safety Risk" label onto the 2010 Lexus GX 460, the automaker asked its dealers to suspend sales of the freshly redesigned SUV.

"We are taking the situation with the GX 460 very seriously and are determined to identify and correct the issue Consumer Reports identified," said Mark Templin, Lexus group vice president and general manager. "Our engineering teams are vigorously testing the GX using Consumer Reports' specific parameters to identify how we can make the GX's performance even better."

The rapid response comes at a time when Toyota is being accused of dragging its feet in regard to its recent accelerator pedal woes.

At issue is what Consumer Reports characterized as a late-intervening electronic stability control system, identified during its emergency-handling tests.

"When pushed to its limits on our track's handling course, the rear of the GX we bought slid out until the vehicle was almost sideways before the electronic stability control system was able to regain control," the magazine said. "We believe that in real-world driving, that situation could lead to a rollover accident, which could cause serious injury or death."

The magazine was not aware of any such reports, but recommended exercising care when exiting the highway or traveling twisty roads.

As for the 2010 Lexus GX 460 SUVs already on the road, Mr. Templin said Lexus dealers would provide any concerned owner a loaner car until a remedy is available.

Customers who have any questions or concerns are urged to contact Lexus Customer Satisfaction at 1-800-25 LEXUS or 1-800-255-3987.