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Lexus recall: Is your car affected?

Lexus recall may affect 245,000 U.S. cars with a potential fuel leak.

By Mary Helen MillerContributor / January 26, 2011

A Lexus recall in the United States is part of a larger Toyota recall of 1.7 million cars worldwide. Toyota is recalling vehicles that may be leaking small amounts of fuel.

Randy Snyder / AP / File

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Toyota is initiating another huge recall.

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On Wednesday, the Japanese automaker said it is recalling 1.7 million vehicles worldwide, including approximately 245,000 Lexus models sold in the United States.

Models sold in various parts of the world are involved for different reasons. In the US, the models are being recalled because of a potential fuel leak that could cause a fuel odor in the car.

The following models are part of the recall:

  • Lexus GS 300/350 (2006 and 2007 models)
  • Lexus IS250 (2006 through early 2009 models)
  • Lexus IS350 (2006 through early 2008 models)

Although Toyota announced it would initiate the recall, it offered no time frame when it would begin repairing the vehicles.

The flaw in the Lexuses involves a fuel pressure sensor that can come loose. The sensor is connected to a pipe that delivers fuel to the engine, and if it is not sufficiently tight, it may eventually loosen enough to leak fuel.

"There are no warnings that this condition will occur,” Toyota said in a press release. “However, if fuel is leaking from the fuel pressure sensor, in some instances a fuel odor may be noticed from the engine compartment.”

When Toyota obtains the parts it needs to fix the problem, it will send out letters asking owners to bring their cars in for inspection. The inspection should take about an hour, and if a repair is necessary, it should take about three hours. The repair will involve either tightening the sensor or replacing a gasket. Although notification letters have not been sent yet, vehicle owners who are concerned about a leak can take their car to a dealership for an inspection at any time.

The fix is free to the vehicle owner.

Brian R. Lyons, a spokesperson for Lexus, described the leak as "very, very minute," and would not speculate as to what the worst-case scenario would be if a vehicle were not repaired.

"We don't have any confirmed cases of accidents or injuries associated with this," Lyons said.

However, he added, "We do have one insurance claim that we have been unable to confirm at this point."