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NHTSA Investigating Toyota Corolla

Posted: Feb 10, 2010 10:00 a.m.

Another Toyota safety issue is in the news. This time it's the Toyota Corolla.

USA Today reports, "Federal safety officials say they will look into complaints from Toyota Corolla drivers about difficulty with the steering on their vehicles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has received about 80 complaints from drivers of 2009 and 2010 Corollas. Many say their cars can wander when they drive on the highway, making it hard to stay in lanes."

An investigation by Automotive News found that the 2010 Toyota Corolla "has been the subject of 83 power-steering complaints to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration since April 2008. Seventy-six of those reports note that the vehicle unexpectedly veers to the left or right at 40 miles an hour and up."

Jalopnik says, "Complainants have compared the movement to being buffeted by strong winds, sliding on black ice, or hydroplaning. They said that after trying to straighten the car, it can overcorrect -- requiring the driver to use a tight, persistent, two-handed grip on the wheel to travel in a straight line. Yes, that's right -- keeping both hands on the wheel constantly will solve the problem."

Automotive News says, "The complaints cite 10 injuries resulting from six accidents, which sometimes left the vehicle upside down, at the bottom of a cliff or in a ditch."

The news couldn't come at a worse time for Toyota.   The Chicago Sun-Times reports, "Toyota now has recalled a total of 8.5 million vehicles for problems with floor mats, gas pedals and, for the hybrids, brakes." Also, "Further adding to the embarrassment was State Farm's announcement Tuesday that it had told federal safety regulators in late 2007 that it had noticed an increase in reports of unexpected acceleration in Toyota vehicles."

Check out the latest Toyota recall news and information, including how the company's recent troubles affect our rankings. If you're in the market for a new car, check out the U.S. News rankings of this year's best cars as well as this month's best car deals