Timeline: Toyota safety recall knocks No.1 automaker

(BestGrowthStock) – Toyota Motor Corp has halted U.S. sales of some of its best-selling vehicles under to address a product safety crisis that threatens its once untouchable reputation for quality.

Following are some milestones in Toyota’s recent history.

2003 – Toyota makes 6.78 million vehicles and overtakes Ford Motor Co in annual sales to become world No.2 behind General Motors.

2005 – Toyota takes minority stake in Fuji Heavy Industries, maker of Subaru cars, for cooperation in vehicle technology development and use of its U.S. factory.

2006 – Toyota group global sales of 8.808 million vehicles exceeds GM’s by 128,000, making it the world’s biggest automaker. (* Figure excludes cars made by a Chinese joint venture in which GM holds a minority stake.)

2007 – Toyota loses top quality spot in U.S. magazine Consumer Reports. Launches its full-sized Tundra pickup in the U.S. market.

Jul, 2008 – Toyota announces plans to cut production of Tundra and others as sales of SUVs and pickups fall on soaring fuel prices.

Dec, 2008 – Toyota forecasts first ever annual loss. Shares hit lowest since mid-2003.

Jan, 2009 – Toyota says to recall more than 1.35 mln cars globally over defects in seatbelts and exhausts.

– Appoints founder’s grandson, Akio Toyoda, CEO.

May, 2009 – Toyota posts $4.3 bln annual loss.

Jun, 2009 – GM files for bankruptcy

Aug, 2009 – Toyota recalls 688,000 cars in China for faulty window switch.

Sep, 2009 – Toyota says to recall 3.8 mln U.S. vehicles over faulty floormats linked to crashes.

Dec, 2009 – Prius hybrid becomes Japan’s top selling car for first time since debut in 1997.

Jan, 2010 – Toyota shuts down sales of its best-selling vehicles in the U.S. after problems with faulty accelerator pedals. Some 5.9 million vehicles now involved in recall.

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(Source: Toyota, Reuters)

Timeline: Toyota safety recall knocks No.1 automaker