Toyota “Unintended Acceleration” Charges Dismissed

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Will we ever know the truth?

A judge on Thursday dismissed a criminal charge against Toyota Motor Corp. after the Japanese automaker completed three years of monitoring under a $1.2 billion settlement in which it admitted to misleading the public about sudden unintended acceleration in its vehicles.

U.S. District Judge William Pauley in New York agreed to a U.S. Justice Department request to end the case stemming from Toyota’s admission that it misled U.S. consumers by concealing and making deceptive statements about the extent of sudden acceleration problems in 2009 and 2010.

But did the cars actually accelerate on their own? The result of something haywire with the drive-by-wire throttle control system?

Or was it – as Toyota said at the time – chiefly an issue of maladjusted floor mats? These questions haven’t been answered.

In bringing charges in March 2014, the Justice Department said that Toyota minimized problems, misled regulators and provided inaccurate information to Congress in the scandal linked to at least five deaths.

The $1.2 billion settlement was the largest penalty levied by the United States on an auto company until Volkswagen AG admitted to diesel emissions fraud earlier this year and paid $4.3 billion in fines.

Toyota spokesman Scott Vazin said on Thursday the company was pleased the court accepted the recommendation. “Over the past three years, we have worked hard in the spirit of continuous improvement to make Toyota a stronger company that serves its customers better,” he said.

Pauley said in 2014 the case represented a “reprehensible picture of corporate misconduct,” and expressed hope the government would ultimately hold the responsible decision-makers at Toyota accountable.

In his order on Thursday, Pauley said: “Regrettably, the payment of a $1.2 billion fine and the appointment of a monitor appear to have concluded the government’s investigation into this tragic episode.”

Toyota made significant changes to its safety practices after the recall crisis that briefly forced it to halt sales of nearly half of its vehicles in 2010 and led to the company president, Akio Toyoda, appearing before Congress to apologize.

Toyota settled other related suits, including an agreement covering as many as 22 million current and former Toyota owners over sudden acceleration claims valued at as much as $1.63 billion. There are still individual civil claims pending in California.

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15 COMMENTS

  1. Like vzguy suspects, I am inclined to think there was some political reasons for the timing of the Toyota SUA news stories. Also, the fact that this condition has exhibited itself across many different brands of cars. But Toyota was picked out as the target corporation. I just observed a case of SUA ith a late model Mazda 3 around June 2017 in San Jose, CA. The driver was pulling into a parking spot when the engine suddenly revved up. The car jumped across the sidewalk and headed into the street perpendicular to traffic. He had to quickly turn the car back onto the sidewalk and then ran head long into a tree to stop in order to avoid colliding with moving traffic on a major fairway. However, this problem is not isolated to Japanese branded cars. I have heard stories of similar cases with Ford and Dodge cars also. My belief is that Drive-by-Wire is subject to malfunctions caused by Electro-Magnetic Interference. The EMI might come from an over-powered CB radio or other high powered intermittent signal transmissions.

  2. I realize I missed my chance to cash in all through the 60’s. Can’t recall how many times I jobbed one of GM’S big cars, the motor mount broke and the linkage got against the firewall opening and pulled that baby wide open and wouldn’t let go till you turned the key off. I never realized I was sitting on a fortune and not another repair bill.

  3. A friend called from 30 miles away one day and I was already on the road. His wife was in a nearby town with pickup problems. The Dodge Cummins would only rev way up when she started it. I picked him up and drove to where she was. He walked over with her trying to tell him what was going on. He opened the door, looked in disgustedly, jerked the floormat back to its original position, got in, started it up and said “it’s fixed” and walked away. Back into my truck he said “dumbass” and I laughed. Wish I’d had it on video.

  4. Of you can just have a corporation that gets in bed with Uncle from the get go. Like Elon and Tesla. Let’s look at what it would cost to have him redo Puerto Rico’s grid.

    A large fixed tilt photovoltaic plant that generates 1 GWh per year requires, on average, 2.8 acres for the solar panels. This means that a solar power plant that provides all of the electricity for 1,000 households would require 32 acres of land.

    1.3 million households in Puerto Rico.
    2.2 million acres of land on Puerto Rico.

    So 1300*32 acres would mean 41600/2,200,000 acres of Puerto Rico would be covered in solar panels.

    Capital cost is $130,000 per GwH multiplied by the 1300 needed. Capital cost is $169 million to power the homes.

    Now you’ve got power during sunny days and you can call that good enough I guess.

    But wait, what about Elon. He’s got the new Tesla Powerwall 2.0 batteries which includes a built-in inverter for sale at $5500 each.

    That’ll be a $7.15 billion extra dollars for all those Power Walls.
    No more dirty hydrocarbons, just good old fashioned lithium ions in every Puerto Rico home.

    An in depth look at the installation and use of the Tesla Powerwall 2.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nWLzlrGGuxQ

  5. It’s up to these giant corporations to defend themselves when cases like this happen. Both Toyota and VW chose to not do so, for reasons we don’t know.

    Used to be, that big companies would defend themselves to the ends of the earth, even if they were so guilty of something it was hard to hide it.

    I think big companies will and are beginning to regret their “partnership” with big government. I think big government is getting to the point where they feel they don’t need big business anymore. That they will run everything now.

    I always have to shake my head when I hear some businessman talking about the partnership between the private and public sector. What does the public sector bring to the table that is so important?

    • Defeating Big Tobacco was a proof of concept exercise.

      This was then rolled out to capture the automotive industry, and countless other major industries.
      The capture and usurpation is ongoing.

      It’s a recurring dystopian pattern.

      Defeating one great European power – Germany – was a proof of concept exercise.

      This methodology was then rolled out to defeat:

      Spain

      Portugal

      Italy

      France

      Netherlands

      England

      America

      Funny how such a small group of parasitic vermin can destroy such a large herd of economic and nationalist elephants.

      • Viewed from the outside, the defeat of big tobacco looked to me like an inside job. It looked as though the tobacco companies’ legal departments went in the tank. I mean they just threw the fight and gave in.

        My wife worked for one of the bigs at the time and within a few years, their corporate headquarters in NYC had to be abandoned. The corporation moved that worthless legal department to Richmond, just as if they were actually part of the team.

        • I remember seeing an ad in the wanted section when I lived in Charlotte.

          Sounded like a great job. My Dad’s a starch chemist, but his corporate owner was one of the big tobacco companies for many years.

          I think tobacco has been nationalized. The government itself is effectively the owner of the land and the crops in America.

          They’re not even willing to let it innovate like they have with Napa valley.

          Surely a healthier form that will accommodate Uncle’s fatwas isn’t that difficult, but they won’t allow the free market to operate here.

          This is the very tip of the spear where America ceded capitalism to China, despite all the bullshit to the contrary.

          It is only in China/Japan/South Korea/Border Mexico and various isolated Industrial Towns where pure capitalism is allowed to continue.

          It is utterly dead here in America, other than virtual computer and electronic capitalism.

          The way oil exploration works even, as one example, is closer to farming than it is to capitalism, I’m thinking, though I’m not sure.

          Everything has to be a secret to keep Uncle out, this makes it very difficult to achieve economies of scale and to have an adequate division of labor and expertise.

          • Oil exploration is like subsidy farming. The big get bigger and the small get smaller until they’re gone.

            Not much room for wildcatters now. I’ve watched mom and pop drillers dwindle all my life.

            Small companies with owners the workers can see and speak with every day are gone.

            There was a time that Sonny and the boys did eat breakfast on the rig but now there’s even protocol for straw boss and roughneck exchange.

            No exaggeration, now roughnecks are so fat they have to maneuver to pass in huge portable buildings that pass for doghouses.

            UA kits are as ubiquitous as beer in the rig cooler used to be.

            • Miserable cucks. Peeing for their masters on command.

              And for any who do, I hope they sneak out the back door and commit two “bad boy” acts for every pat on the head “good boy” they have to endure.

              Was a time when women understood that exploratory pioneer man was necessarily a different caste than white picket fence man.

              That you need some of the disposable first types before you’ll get any of the second types.

              Until this returns to historical normal, I’d recommend setting aside some time to do whatever the fuck you want and keep it to yourself. Fuck all the Nurse Ratcheds right in the pussy.

              Even the ones who lie to our faces and tell us how much they love and need us.

              Want to take away my patriarchy? Molon Labe.

  6. Always felt that the whole thing was bogus. If you recall, just before these allegations of sudden acceleration popped up, two things happened. First, the gunvermin bailed out GM, becoming an “owner “ of the company – at least temporarily. Second, right around that same time, Toyota overtook GM as the number one selling auto company in the world. What a convenient time for the NHTSA to manufacture some bad PR and knock Toyota down a peg or two. Many of the individual stories didn’t add up either. I remember the one of an off duty CHP officer who crashed his personal car at 115/120 or some ridiculous speed. A trained “hero”, and he didn’t have the brains to put the car in neutral or just turn it off? I call BS on the whole thing.

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