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UPDATE: Lexus expands to global stop sale of 2010 GX 460, tests all SUVs [Video]

by Mark Kleis

Following a warning by a consumer advocacy group about the increased risk of rollover in the Lexus GX 460 due to an improperly functioning electronic stability control system, Toyota announced a stop-sale on the model in the U.S. market on Tuesday while it planned to conduct its own testing of the issue. Now, Toyota says it has enacted a global halt on the sales of the luxury SUV, expanding beyond the initial freeze in the U.S. market.



Update: Toyota expands sales suspension to all global markets
According to a report by the Associated Press, Toyota first suspended sales of its Lexus GX 460 SUV following the issuance of a "Don't Buy: Safety Risk" label from Consumer Reports, following results of its handling tests. Toyota first announced that it didn't believe there was a safety issue, pointing to the vehicle's ability to pass the government's crash tests and a long record of safety after Consumer Reports' issuance of its findings, but later changed its position.

Toyota says it will test all of its SUVs
In addition to the now global stop sale for the Lexus GX 460, Toyota says it will test all SUV models across its Toyota and Lexus lines in a move that will help the automaker quell fears that the problem may exist in other vehicles, according to BBC News. No one, including Consumer Reports, has reported any similar issues with Toyota or Lexus models.

What sparked the stop sale?
According to the Consumer Reports testing, the seven-seat luxury SUV failed to engage the stability control system until the vehicle was already "nearly sideways." The failure of the electronic stability control system to properly aid in regaining control of the vehicle prompted the consumer advocacy group to issue the urgent warning.

"For more than 20 years, Lexus has made customer safety and satisfaction our highest priorities. We are taking the situation with the GX 460 very seriously and are determined to identify and correct the issue Consumer Reports identified. At this time we have asked our dealers to temporarily suspend sales of the 2010 GX 460," said Lexus in a statement.

Lexus has sold roughly 5,000 examples of the vehicle in the three months it has been on the market Lexus says it will provide a loaner car should owners not feel safe driving their GX 460 until the issue is resolved.



References
1. 'Toyota to temporarily halt sales...' view
1. 'Toyota suspends sales of Lexus...' view