After public concern over Toyota acceleration recalls, government officials released a report on Feb. 3 that showed the vehicle manufacturer’s problems may have been mechanical, not electrical.
The report comes in wake of multiple car accident cases related to Toyota’s involuntary acceleration problems, in particular the San Diego wrongful death case of an officer, 45, whose Toyota rental car crashed as a result of involuntary acceleration.
The officer and his family were instantly killed when their Toyota rental crashed into a fireball accident due to involuntary acceleration. Issues such as these have caused Toyota to recall more than 12 million cars since 2009.
Toyota has always denied that electronic flaws were to blame for their runaway vehicles. While the government confirms Toyota’s claims and cites mechanical errors as the major cause for concern, specifically sticky floor mats that interfered with the Toyota gas pedal, consumers should still be aware that Toyota has is not completely in the clear.
Proceed with caution: Toyota not cleared from all wrongdoing
Plenty of lawsuits against Toyota are still pending because of other issues besides electronics, according to sources. While Toyota may be thrilled at the government’s findings, the reports do not dismiss the validity of the lawsuits which stem from defects completely unrelated to Toyota’s electronic systems.
Experts in the auto industry speculate the government reports will not bolster Toyota’s sales due in part to their less-than-ideal public reporting on recalls. Last year, for instance, President Akio Toyoda refused to take questions from the media immediately following the recall. Later, though, Toyoda made tearful apologies on behalf of Toyota for not responding to the recalls sooner.
The public may have seen tactics such as these as a form of denial, and the public’s perception may have gone downhill since, contributing to low sales volume in 2010 for the Japanese automaker.
Consumers are urged to proceed with caution since the government’s findings are not necessarily the end-all of recall problems for Toyota.
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