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Report: Some Owners Say Floormats Aren't to Blame in Toyota Crashes

Posted: Nov 04, 2009 10:48 a.m.

Last month, Toyota recalled nearly four million vehicles after a high-profile accident in which a Lexus accelerated uncontrollably, causing a fiery crash that killed four people. Investigators believed that that the driver’s side floormat in the car might have snagged on the vehicle’s gas pedal, causing the unintended acceleration. Now, one prominent news organization claims, some Toyota owners don’t believe the company has actually found the cause of the problem. 

ABC News reports, "Safety analysts found an estimated 2000 cases in which owners of Toyota cars including Camry, Prius and Lexus, reported that their cars surged without warning up to speeds of 100 miles per hour." Toyota, ABC says, blames "floor mats becoming stuck under gas pedals, but owners say that's not what happened to them."  

Kicking Tires explains, "Some think a glitch in the electronic computer system, which controls the throttle, is to blame. Several owners have come forward to swear that their runaway vehicles had no floormat issues whatsoever." Government investigators are familiar with the claims. "The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has conducted six investigations of the acceleration issues since 2003 and found no problems with Toyota’s electronics."

ABC reports, "Toyota officials refused to talk with ABC News about the incidents." 

Jalopnik, however, reports that "In a press briefing held yesterday" to discuss the company’s future product plans, Toyota Group Vice President and General Manager Bob Carter "categorically denied claims like those in ABC News investigation into the situation wherein owners are claiming electrical or mechanical faults led to unintended acceleration."

Kicking Tires notes, "NHTSA now says it is still investigating the issue, and it is not resolved."

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