Japan may reform car recall system

Japan's transport minister has said they are considering a reform of its car recall system as claims of Toyota delaying responses to complaints emerged.

Seiji Maehara told Japanese MPs that he was attempting a change on his agency's recall system to respond better to consumer interests, Kyodo News Agency said.

Car manufacturers may be required to respond faster to fix problems, while the agency may also expand the types of defects subject to reporting requirements, reports suggest, citing unnamed ministry officials.

The news comes as concerns are raised in Japan over the Tokyo-headquartered company's recalls of more than eight million vehicles, most in overseas markets.

Japanese officials have hailed Toyota president Akio Toyoda's decision to appear before the US House of Representatives Oversight and Government Reform Committee this week.

They have asked him to reassure customers furious over recalls caused by sticking accelerator pedals, accelerators stuck in floor mats and momentarily unresponsive brakes.

US safety regulators are also probing complaints over Toyota's top-selling model worldwide, the Corolla.

Millions of Toyota vehicles involved in the recalls were made with parts not used in models made and sold in Japan, and the crisis has raised questions over the manufacturer's sterling reputation.

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