February 17, 2010

First Causes

I have not paid much attention to the Toyota accelerator kerfluffle, but I've been half expecting to see something like this come along:

(CNN) -- A preliminary report from a consulting firm hired to analyze Toyota and Lexus vehicles linked to unintended acceleration failed to find any problem with the carmaker's electronic throttle controls, Toyota announced Saturday.

Toyota said it had retained Exponent, an independent engineering and scientific consulting firm, to conduct the analysis of its vehicles that use the suspect Electronic Throttle Control System with intelligence.

"The interim report, dated February 4, 2010, notes that Exponent was unable to induce unintended acceleration in any of the ETCS-i equipped Toyota and Lexus vehicles it tested," the company said in a posting on its Web site. "In all cases, the vehicle either behaved normally or entered a fail-safe mode where engine power was significantly reduced or shut off."

Readers may remember the sudden acceleration problem that seemed to plague some Audi models back in the 80's. As Peej O'Rourke detailed in his Parliament of Whores, after a whoooooole lot of money was spent on recalls and lawsuits and guv'mint studies, in the end it seemed pretty plain that the actual cause of the problem was moron drivers.

I'm not saying there couldn't be something mechanically wrong with Toyota's cars now. I'm just saying that if I were a betting man, I'd plunk money on driver error as the more likely explanation of the incidents suddenly making the nooz.

Posted by Robert at February 17, 2010 08:58 AM | TrackBack

I agree. I also heard that floor mats were getting up under the gas pedal as well. I don't know about any other autos, but the floor mats in my GM never move.

Posted by: GroovyVic at February 17, 2010 09:26 AM

So how many of these moron drivers are from Maryland?

Posted by: rbj at February 17, 2010 09:30 AM

If it is a mechanical cause, Toyota will set it right...

Posted by: kmr at February 17, 2010 12:14 PM

I've been confused by the floor mat thing. I have a 2003 Corolla and my driver's side floor mat has a grommet that is looped to a hook in the floor. It does not move. As a matter of fact, I've never been able to get it out in order to vacuum it thoroughly.

Posted by: jen at February 18, 2010 06:10 AM

I remember the Audi debacle well, as my father drove an Audi 5000 at the time. I remember the pastor & his wife on the 60 Minutes interview; there was no earthly way anyone was ever going to get her to accept the fact that her foot was mashing the gas pedal as she pushed her son through the back wall of the garage with her Audi 5000.

Posted by: Captain Ned at February 18, 2010 09:52 AM
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