Business Insights

Is Toyotas Name Cleared?

As Toyota is a partner client, I found it hard to find that their QC would be so bad. I made a note about it on this website. It looks like my instinct was correct according to the Nikkei this AM. Below is the article in English.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

U.S. Study Indicates Driver Error In Most Toyota Crashes
WASHINGTON (Dow Jones)–A government safety examination of Toyota Motor Corp. (7203) vehicles involved in crashes attributed to sudden acceleration so far has not yielded evidence of flaws in Toyotas while pointing instead to driver error.

Congressional staff members were briefed on the study Tuesday in Washington. The preliminary report examined 58 electronic recording devices similar to black boxes in airplanes that can provide information about what was happening with a car when it crashed.

The report, which analyzed accidents for which the driver made an allegation of unintended acceleration, draws no conclusions about the data, other than they don’t point to a flaw in Toyota vehicles.

Of the devices analyzed, 35 showed that at the moment of impact, the driver hadn’t depressed the brake pedal at all. Fourteen more showed partial braking, while nine showed the brake depressed at the “last second” before the crash.

There were a handful of other results where the brake was pressed early and let go, or in which both the gas and brake pedals were pressed at the same time. There also was one case of pedal entrapment by a floor mat.

In five cases, the electronic recording device failed to work.

While the agency didn’t make conclusions about the results, the evidence points to a preponderance of cases where people who claimed unintended acceleration were pressing the wrong pedal. That is the same finding reported last month by The Wall Street Journal and attributed to a person familiar with the study.

The study is ongoing and both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration are evaluating the software and mechanical systems of Toyota vehicles, as well as their susceptibility to electromagnetic interference.


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