WASHINGTON - Toyota Motor (IW 1000/8) will pay a record $17.35 million dollar fine for failing to promptly notify U.S. authorities about a safety defect on 2010 Lexus models, a federal agency said Tuesday.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Toyota had agreed to pay the penalty, the maximum fine allowable under the law, "in response to the agency's assertion that the automaker failed to report a safety defect to the federal government in a timely manner."

"This action represents the single highest civil penalty amount ever paid to NHTSA for violations stemming from a recall," the NHTSA said.

Toyota announced in late June the recall in the United States of 154,000 Lexus RX 350 and RX 450h of the 2010 model year to fix a problem with the floor mat that could trap the accelerator pedal, causing undesired acceleration.

The NHTSA noted the company's recall came after it had contacted Toyota in May about a trend in floor mat pedal entrapment in 2010 Lexus RX 350s.

A month later, Toyota told the agency it was aware of 63 alleged incidents of the problem since 2009, it said.