July 13, 2010

Killer Cars Update

It would take me too long to find it, but a while back when the country was in the grip of anti-Toyota sudden acceleration syndrome fevah, I remarked that the actual cause of the outburst of SAS incidents was probably moron drivers accidentally gunning it, and that the whole thing reminded me of the same accusation leveled at Audi back in the 80's.

Well damme if I wasn't right:

The U.S. Department of Transportation has analyzed dozens of data recorders from Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles involved in accidents blamed on sudden acceleration and found that at the time of the crashes, throttles were wide open and the brakes were not engaged, people familiar with the findings said.

The results suggest that some drivers who said their Toyota and Lexus vehicles surged out of control were mistakenly flooring the accelerator when they intended to jam on the brakes. But the findings don't exonerate Toyota from two known issues blamed for sudden acceleration in its vehicles: sticky accelerator pedals and floor mats that can trap accelerator pedals to the floor.

The U.S. Department of Transportation found that throttles wide open and brakes not engaged on Toyota cars involved in accidents that were initially blamed on sudden acceleration. Mike Ramsey discusses. Also, Joe White and Ashby Jones discuss the U.S. Court ruling striking down certain FCC rules against broadcast indecency.

The findings by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration involve a sample of reports in which a driver of a Toyota vehicle said the brakes were depressed but failed to stop the car from accelerating and ultimately crashing.

A NHTSA spokeswoman declined to confirm the findings.

The data recorders analyzed by NHTSA were selected by the agency, not Toyota, based on complaints the drivers had filed with the government.

The findings are consistent with a 1989 government-sponsored study that blamed similar driver mistakes for a rash of sudden-acceleration reports involving Audi 5000 sedans.

Of course, NHTSA can't just come out and call the public a bunch of morons, so it also tagged Toyota itself about sticky accelerator pedals and poorly designed floor mats.

I strongly recommend that you go back and read the chapter of Peej O'Rorke's Parliament of Whores that discusses the earlier Audi outburst.

Posted by Robert at July 13, 2010 04:58 PM | TrackBack

Don't forget Dateline's rigging of GM's side saddle gas tanks, that required toy rockets to ignite....

Posted by: kmr at July 13, 2010 07:17 PM

Its very rare that you find the relevant information on the net but your article did provide me the relevant information. I am going to save your URL and will definitely visit the site again.

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Posted by: English Term Paper at July 14, 2010 02:41 AM

I think we need to make sure our cars are in good condition before using it or driving it. Monthly check-up would be great. It will not matter if its Ford, Mitsubishi or Toyota or any other brands, accidents really happens..

Posted by: New Car Search at July 14, 2010 05:52 AM

The up side of this is that the buying public didn't really fall for the scare tactics - Toyota didn't see a sustained, significant sales drop because of this.

Frankly, a part of me has thought all along that the whole thing was deliberately blown out of proportion in order to drive (heh) worried Toyota drivers to buy their next car from the car manufacturer now owned by the government.

Not that our government would purposely do that, oh no siree.

Posted by: Diane at July 14, 2010 07:06 AM
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