WASHINGTON (Bloomberg) -- Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles in unintended acceleration crashes may be linked to 89 deaths since 2000, up from 52 reported in March, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.
The deaths occurred in 71 crashes, more than the 43 reported in March, the agency said today, citing data through May 20, in an e-mailed response to a request from Bloomberg News.
The agency has received 6,200 complaints concerning unintended acceleration in Toyota vehicles from 2000 to mid-May, the agency said, up from 2,600 reported in March.
U.S. regulators haven’t found evidence to warrant a new defect investigation after speaking to 100 car owners who complained about sudden acceleration after Toyota recalled and repaired their vehicles, NHTSA Administrator David Strickland said at a May 20 House hearing.
Toyota hasn’t found any electronics flaws after examining more than 2,000 vehicles that would help explain the reports of unintended acceleration, Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc. President James Lentz said at the hearing.
Toyota has said it will install advanced brake-override systems in all new models beginning in 2011. The company will also retrofit seven current models with a software fix, which slows a vehicle if it receives signals both to accelerate and brake, Lentz told a House committee in February.
The Transportation Department said May 18 Toyota had paid a record $16.4 million U.S. fine for failing to alert auto-safety regulators quickly enough about vehicle defects that could cause unintended acceleration.