WASHINGTON — US safety regulators have stepped up their investigation into complaints of stalled engines on
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration upgraded its investigation last week and is looking at two possible causes behind the stalling: improper coating on circuit boards and a crack in the surface of a glass coating. Both could have happened during production.
The new investigation, called an engineering analysis, covers 1.8 million Corolla and Matrix cars from model years 2005 to 2007. It is a more in-depth investigation of the vehicles than the preliminary probe begun by NHTSA in December. That probe covered vehicles from the 2006 model year only. NHTSA said it has received 163 complaints of stalling engines in the cars.
A Toyota spokeswoman confirmed the NHTSA investigation. She said Toyota was cooperating fully.
It was unclear whether a recall will be necessary, though the engineering analysis will determine if there is a safety defect that needs to be fixed.