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First Bellwether Trial In Toyota Sudden Unintended Acceleration Cases

A recent CBS News article reports on the first "bellwether" trial involving liability for the so-called "sudden unintended acceleration" affecting certain Toyota vehicles. The case deals with a 2006 Toyota Camry that plaintiffs allege unexpectedly and uncontrollably accelerated to speeds of up to 100 mph, which caused a collision that killed the driver. Plaintiffs claim that the sudden unintended acceleration is due to auto defects in Toyota's electronic throttle system. According to the lawsuit, the driver of the Camry tried unsuccessfully to use both the brake pedal and the emergency brake in order to slow down the car, but was unable to slow it down. The article notes that, while Toyota included a "brake override system in its European fleet", the U.S. version of the Camry "didn't have a mechanism to override the accelerator if the gas and brake pedals are pressed simultaneously..." Toyota argues that the Camry model in question has no defects, and that "a brake override system would not have prevented [the] accident" which is the subject of the bellwether case.

Sources: CBS News, http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-500395_162-57594795/bellwether-toyota-sudden-acceleration-trial-starting/