When you buy a luxury vehicle like a Lexus, you probably expect it to be the safest vehicle you can buy. Unfortunately, that is not always true. Luxury car makers are no more concerned about your family’s safety than traditional car makers. The newest Lexus recall of the HS 250h luxury hybrid sedan is a perfect example of this.
Lexus and Toyota claim to put your family’s safety first by making the safest cars and SUVs available. Why then is the newest recall for a fuel line failure that all car makers have known about for at least 30 years? Lexus has failed to meet the minimum standards for fuel system integrity, and the results of this failure could be disastrous if you are involved in a rear-end collision.
The Lexus HS 250h hybrid sedan is currently under a voluntary recall because the fuel line system failed the NHTSA standards in recent testing. The FMVSS 301 is the federal test that determines the minimum levels of fuel system safety for all cars and trucks on the roads. This is an absolute minimum level of safety, and the Lexus cars failed to meet it.
Defective fuel systems in cars have been in the national news for nearly thirty years. All car makers know how to design fuel systems that will not explode on impact. The most notorious example of fuel system failure was the Ford Pinto. This defective car was produced from the late 1970s to the early 1980s and it caused hundreds of people to die when the gas tank exploded in rear-end collisions.
In the 1990s the Ford Crown Victoria had problems with gas tank explosions. The design was different from the one in the Ford Pinto, but it was just as deadly. This defect killed dozens of people, including 14 police officers.
Because of litigation over the Ford defects, all car makers, including Toyota, are aware that economically viable and safer fuel system designs are available. Nonetheless, there are tens of thousands of vehicles on the roads today with hazardous fuel tanks.
Car makers like Toyota have no excuse for making their cars with gas tanks that have the propensity to explode. If you survive a collision, there is no reason why you should suffer additional burn injuries when your fuel system explodes. This is why car makers have a responsibility to design fuel systems that protect consumers from fires.
Through litigation, Toyota and other car makers have reluctantly adopted designs in their cars that should have been added years ago. The FMVSS 301 is a minimum standard for car makers to meet. It should not be their goal to stop at the bare minimum. If you have purchased a luxury car, you deserve the very best protection that is available. Toyota knows how to design fuel systems that don’t explode, and they have the technology. It’s time for them to be held accountable for their decisions to place profits above your family’s safety.
Learn more about car safety defect litigation and how it helps keep you and your family safe from defective auto products.