In September 2009, Toyota issued a massive nationwide recall due to mounting reports of sudden unintended acceleration (SUA) in a number of its vehicles. Deadly and unpredictable, sudden unintended acceleration refers to any type of equipment malfunction that accelerates the vehicle while the driver is not pushing the gas pedal. As a result, the driver will be unable to slow or stop the vehicle with the braking system. In the worst cases, SUA can cause fatal crashes, as well as devastating injuries and extremely costly property damage.
• 2005 – 2010 Avalons
• 2007 – 2010 Camrys
• 2009 – 2010 Corollas
• 2008 – 2010 Highlanders
• 2007 – 2010 Lexus ES350
• 2006 – 2010 Lexus IS250 and IS350
• 2009 – 2010 Matrix
• 2004 – 2009 Prius
• 2009 – 2010 RAV4s
• 2008 – 2010 Sequoias
• 2005 – 2010 Tacomas
• 2007 – 2010 Tundras
If you or a loved one owns a recalled Toyota vehicle, contact your local Toyota dealership for details on how to get your vehicle fixed for free. Many dealerships are accommodating customers by offering free vehicle pickup, as well as free rental cars.
To date, Toyota has stated that sudden unintended acceleration has been caused by defective floor mats and/or accelerator pedals that have gotten stuck. However, many regulatory agencies also suspect that some type of electronic failure may also play a role in causing SUA accidents. Toyota denies these claims.
Currently, the House Energy & Commerce Committee is conducting an investigation to review the recalls, policies and possible negligence of the Toyota Corporation. Additionally, a few other federal and state organizations are conducting their own hearings and trials regarding SUA in Toyota cars:
• The New York grand jury has issued two subpoenas to Toyota regarding the corporation's massive regulatory problems, possible criminal negligence charges and potential securities violations.
• The Los Angeles Office of Securities & Exchange Commission has issued a subpoena to Toyota regarding the company's knowledge of SUA, as well as its policies and procedures regarding disclosing SUA to consumers and the public.
• SUA has caused 34 deaths in the U.S.
• Since September 2009, the Toyota sudden unintended acceleration recall has affected about 10 million vehicles, with about 20 percent of these being subject to multiple recalls
• Customer reports indicate that more than 80 percent of SUA complaints are not associated with defective floor mats or sticking accelerator pedals
• The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has conducted 8 investigations into SUA cases and determined that sticking pedals did NOT play a role in any of these accidents
• To date, Toyota has only repaired about 600,000 vehicles affected by the recall
• Toyota has received nearly 40,000 customer complaints regarding sudden unintended acceleration since the national public announcement of the recall
• This SUA recall is the largest recall Toyota has had to issue in the history of the company
• As of February 2010, Toyota's sales were down nearly 40 percent due to the recall and press surrounding sudden unintended acceleration