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New Lawsuits Brought Against Toyota

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On: Wed, Aug 4, 2010 at 1:40PM | By: Sherry Christiansen


New Lawsuits Brought Against Toyota

In its most recent court proceedings, Toyota Motor Corp. faces two lawsuits, filed in federal court in Santa Ana, California by Toyota and Lexus owners, regarding sudden acceleration of certain Toyota models. Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed by Toyota owners, all claiming that their vehicles exhibited unintended acceleration, but in April U. S. District Court Judge James Selna took on the suits, which had been consolidated into 2 federal cases. Attorneys in the class action case said that as many as 40 million Toyota owners could be involved in the case. One lawsuit pertains to the plaintiff's perceived loss of value for her/his Toyota vehicle due to alleged defects. The other claim is a plea for damages from an accident and death attributed to sudden acceleration.

"Toyota has identified two specific mechanical causes of potential unintended acceleration in some of its vehicles and has moved decisively to address these issues with effective and durable solutions," the statement said. "Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls."
 

Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed from Toyota owners all claiming that their vehicles exhibited unintended acceleration, but in April a U. S. District Court Judge named James Selna took on the suits that had been consolidated into 2 federal cases.
Attorneys in the class action economic damages case said that as many as 40 million Toyota owners could be members of the class.
One lawsuit pertains to the plaintiff’s perceived loss of value in her/his Toyota vehicle due to alleged defects. The other claim is a plea for damages as a result of an accident and death that was attribute to sudden acceleration.
"Toyota has identified two specific mechanical causes of potential unintended acceleration in some of its vehicles and has moved decisively to address these issues with effective and durable solutions," the statement said. "Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls."
According to the LA Times, sudden acceleration incidents were verified and documented by Toyota Technicians on several occasions, starting as far back as 2003.
In one report the Toyota technician test drove the vehicle after the customer had brought it in specifically for acceleration issues and in the report the technician documented that the vehicle "began to accelerate on its own," “as engine speed increased to 5,500 rpm from 1,500 rpm,” reported the technician.
Toyota also received evidence that the likelihood of unintended acceleration increase "substantially" in cars with electronic throttle systems, according to court documents.
"Importantly, to date, plaintiffs have not cited a specific cause that would support their claim of a defect in Toyota's Electronic Throttle Control System, and no credible scientific theory or proof has been advanced to support this allegation," Toyota said in a statement Tuesday.
The plaintiffs argue that Toyota should be held responsible for the drop in resale value in cars that are afflicted with this problem and that consumers and businesses should be allowed to return their defective cars to Toyota.
"Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls," the company said. In addition to the acceleration reports, the complaints cite records indicating that Toyota executives went to great lengths to avoid public disclosure of company concerns about the issues such as in this statement found in the documents;"If the engineer who knows the failures well attends the meeting, NHTSA will ask a bunch of questions about the [electronic control unit]" on the vehicle, the e-mail, written by Michiteru Kato, said. "I want to avoid such situations."
According to interpretation of the documents that Toyota was court ordered to supply, Toyota allegedly “pushed hard against NHTSA investigations of sudden acceleration, and strove to ensure that no defects were identified by the agency,” said the LA times.’
"We will 'recall' the '07 ES and Camry floor mat, however, we will NOT declare that a 'safety defect' exist in either the vehicles or the mat," stated Chris Tinto, a Toyota employee in Washington, in a 2007, e-mail.
Attorneys are requesting that Toyota install a brake override system in all cars with en electronic safety throttle and pay damages.
Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed from Toyota owners all claiming that their vehicles exhibited unintended acceleration, but in April a U. S. District Court Judge named James Selna took on the suits that had been consolidated into 2 federal cases.
Attorneys in the class action economic damages case said that as many as 40 million Toyota owners could be members of the class.
One lawsuit pertains to the plaintiff’s perceived loss of value in her/his Toyota vehicle due to alleged defects. The other claim is a plea for damages as a result of an accident and death that was attribute to sudden acceleration.
"Toyota has identified two specific mechanical causes of potential unintended acceleration in some of its vehicles and has moved decisively to address these issues with effective and durable solutions," the statement said. "Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls."
According to the LA Times, sudden acceleration incidents were verified and documented by Toyota Technicians on several occasions, starting as far back as 2003.
In one report the Toyota technician test drove the vehicle after the customer had brought it in specifically for acceleration issues and in the report the technician documented that the vehicle "began to accelerate on its own," “as engine speed increased to 5,500 rpm from 1,500 rpm,” reported the technician.
Toyota also received evidence that the likelihood of unintended acceleration increase "substantially" in cars with electronic throttle systems, according to court documents.
"Importantly, to date, plaintiffs have not cited a specific cause that would support their claim of a defect in Toyota's Electronic Throttle Control System, and no credible scientific theory or proof has been advanced to support this allegation," Toyota said in a statement Tuesday.
The plaintiffs argue that Toyota should be held responsible for the drop in resale value in cars that are afflicted with this problem and that consumers and businesses should be allowed to return their defective cars to Toyota.
"Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls," the company said. In addition to the acceleration reports, the complaints cite records indicating that Toyota executives went to great lengths to avoid public disclosure of company concerns about the issues such as in this statement found in the documents;"If the engineer who knows the failures well attends the meeting, NHTSA will ask a bunch of questions about the [electronic control unit]" on the vehicle, the e-mail, written by Michiteru Kato, said. "I want to avoid such situations."
According to interpretation of the documents that Toyota was court ordered to supply, Toyota allegedly “pushed hard against NHTSA investigations of sudden acceleration, and strove to ensure that no defects were identified by the agency,” said the LA times.’
"We will 'recall' the '07 ES and Camry floor mat, however, we will NOT declare that a 'safety defect' exist in either the vehicles or the mat," stated Chris Tinto, a Toyota employee in Washington, in a 2007, e-mail.
Attorneys are requesting that Toyota install a brake override system in all cars with en electronic safety throttle and pay damages.
Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed from Toyota owners all claiming that their vehicles exhibited unintended acceleration, but in April a U. S. District Court Judge named James Selna took on the suits that had been consolidated into 2 federal cases.
Attorneys in the class action economic damages case said that as many as 40 million Toyota owners could be members of the class.
One lawsuit pertains to the plaintiff’s perceived loss of value in her/his Toyota vehicle due to alleged defects. The other claim is a plea for damages as a result of an accident and death that was attribute to sudden acceleration.
"Toyota has identified two specific mechanical causes of potential unintended acceleration in some of its vehicles and has moved decisively to address these issues with effective and durable solutions," the statement said. "Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls."
According to the LA Times, sudden acceleration incidents were verified and documented by Toyota Technicians on several occasions, starting as far back as 2003.
In one report the Toyota technician test drove the vehicle after the customer had brought it in specifically for acceleration issues and in the report the technician documented that the vehicle "began to accelerate on its own," “as engine speed increased to 5,500 rpm from 1,500 rpm,” reported the technician.
Toyota also received evidence that the likelihood of unintended acceleration increase "substantially" in cars with electronic throttle systems, according to court documents.
"Importantly, to date, plaintiffs have not cited a specific cause that would support their claim of a defect in Toyota's Electronic Throttle Control System, and no credible scientific theory or proof has been advanced to support this allegation," Toyota said in a statement Tuesday.
The plaintiffs argue that Toyota should be held responsible for the drop in resale value in cars that are afflicted with this problem and that consumers and businesses should be allowed to return their defective cars to Toyota.
"Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls," the company said. In addition to the acceleration reports, the complaints cite records indicating that Toyota executives went to great lengths to avoid public disclosure of company concerns about the issues such as in this statement found in the documents;"If the engineer who knows the failures well attends the meeting, NHTSA will ask a bunch of questions about the [electronic control unit]" on the vehicle, the e-mail, written by Michiteru Kato, said. "I want to avoid such situations."
According to interpretation of the documents that Toyota was court ordered to supply, Toyota allegedly “pushed hard against NHTSA investigations of sudden acceleration, and strove to ensure that no defects were identified by the agency,” said the LA times.’
"We will 'recall' the '07 ES and Camry floor mat, however, we will NOT declare that a 'safety defect' exist in either the vehicles or the mat," stated Chris Tinto, a Toyota employee in Washington, in a 2007, e-mail.
Attorneys are requesting that Toyota install a brake override system in all cars with en electronic safety throttle and pay damages.
According to the LA Times, sudden acceleration incidents were verified and documented by Toyota technicians on several occasions, starting as far back as 2003. In one report the Toyota technician test drove the vehicle after the customer had brought it in specifically for acceleration issues, and in the report the technician documented that the vehicle "began to accelerate on its own, as engine speed increased to 5,500 rpm from 1,500 rpm.”

Toyota also received evidence that the likelihood of unintended acceleration increased "substantially" in cars with electronic throttle systems, according to court documents. "Importantly, to date, plaintiffs have not cited a specific cause that would support their claim of a defect in Toyota's Electronic Throttle Control System, and no credible scientific theory or proof has been advanced to support this allegation," Toyota said in a statement.

The plaintiffs argue that Toyota should be held responsible for the drop in resale value in cars that are afflicted with this problem and that consumers and businesses should be allowed to return their defective cars to Toyota. "Toyota rejects claims that plaintiffs suffered economic damages because of the recent recalls," the company said.

In addition to the acceleration reports, the complaints point out that records indicate that Toyota executives went to great lengths to avoid public disclosure of company concerns about the safety issues. This statement was found in the documents: "If the engineer who knows the failures well attends the meeting, NHTSA will ask a bunch of questions about the electronic control unit" on the vehicle, an e-mail, written by Michiteru Kato, said. "I want to avoid such situations." According to interpretation of the documents that Toyota was court-ordered to supply, Toyota allegedly “pushed hard against NHTSA investigations of sudden acceleration, and strove to ensure that no defects were identified by the agency,” said the LA times.

"We will 'recall' the '07 Camry SE floor mat; however, we will NOT declare that a 'safety defect' exists in either the vehicles or the mat," stated Chris Tinto, a Toyota employee in Washington, in a 2007 e-mail.

Attorneys are requesting that Toyota install a brake override system in all cars with an electronic safety throttle and pay damages.

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