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Earlier today, Toyota announced it has agreed to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by owners of several cars recalled due to problems with unintended acceleration.  The total price tag will run to over $1 billion.

The agreement, filed in federal court in California, was called one of the largest product-liability settlements in history.

If the agreement is approved by the court, Toyota would compensate current and former owners for loss of value on vehicles recalled because of faulty floor mats and other conditions that could cause sudden acceleration.

Toyota has also agreed to install special safety systems on 3.2 million vehicles that were recalled for floor-mat problems.

According to the plaintiffs' attorney, this is the biggest car-defect settlement in American history.  The suit was brought almost three years ago due to numerous complaints that forced Toyota to recall cars between September 2009 and December 2010.  Toyota will pay consumers as much as $1.4 billion to settle the charges, and take a $1.1 billion charge against its earnings to fund the settlement.  It will compensate customers for the depreciated value of their cars and retrofit other cars to remove faulty floor mats and sticky pedals.  

The settlement is due to be up for approval after the first of the year.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (6+ / 0-)

    Romney-Ryan: America's Rollback Team

    by Christian Dem in NC on Wed Dec 26, 2012 at 03:42:26 PM PST

  •  Actually, they will fund the settlement... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happy camper

    by reducing the employees' earnings, not the company's.

  •  That's all very odd, (2+ / 0-)

    I thought the whole thing of funky acceleration was shown in tests to be a non-issue. I've always suspected it was from people who never bothered to learn how to drive a Prius, which is unusual until you spend a bit of time getting used to it.

    When I took mine in for the floormat recall thing, the repair guys were all rolling their eyes and saying that it would be nice if people really learned how to drive.

    Looks like some ambulance chasers are going to get a nice cut of the payout.

    We are often so identified with whatever thoughts we may be having that we don’t realize the thoughts are a commentary on reality, and not reality itself. -- Gangaji

    by Mnemosyne on Wed Dec 26, 2012 at 05:01:29 PM PST

    •  It wasn't just the Prius (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      edrie, happy camper

      My daughter's Corolla and my 4Runner were recalled.  Several years of Camry models were nailed too.  

    •  i was selling acura during all this. it was (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mnemosyne, PowWowPollock

      widely accepted industry wide as a computer issue - impossible to easily reproduce, like many software problems.

      at the time, even the woz, who owned and loved his prius, came out and said: computer software glitch.

      frankly, i trust wozniac over the pr firm for toyota!

      i love how the settlement states "faulty floor mats" AND "other issues".

      the police officer wo died with his wife and friend while on the phone with 911 was in a rental car describing the acceleration as it occurred until they all died in the crash.  multiple crashes involved toyotas without floormats!

      what most people don't realize today is that your brakes, steering, transmissions, etc., areall controlled by computers - timing chain linkage, fuel injection, acceleration, collision mitigation systems, etc.

      in 2009, there were over 17 computers in acuras and with new technologies now, even more functions in ALL cars are computerized.

      thinh of it this way:  you are operating you laptop, or multiple laptops simultaneously - and at any given moment, they could malfunction and kill you.

      feel better now?  

      just trying to help out.  oh, and that's why i trust honda/acura the most.  their cars all come from racing technology and are thoroughlt track tested before making it to the average driver's hands!

    •  oh, and had toyota acknowledged the real problem (0+ / 0-)

      before developing a replacement module, they would have been out of business!  as it was, the company took a huge hit!

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