Toyota Wants To Turn The Page
Unless you've been living on Mars, or simply not interested in automotive news, you probably know that Toyota has been severely affected by a series of recalls that were issued in 2009 and 2010. These recalls have affected more than 10 million vehicles worldwide.
Last week Toyota Canada announced that they want to turn the page on this story, and offered a tentative agreement for owners of the affected vehicles. Reliable scientific evidence and several independent evaluations have confirmed the safety of the Toyota throttle's electronic control systems.
The settlement is designed to help renew Canadian's confidence in their vehicle and to limit potential loss of resale value.
Toyota is waiting for some Canadian courts to approve the agreement, including those in Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and Saskatchewan. The settlement is one of the largest in Canadian history, potentially affecting up to 1.4 million Toyota and Lexus customers across Canada.
Many Toyota owners sued the company because their vehicle was affected by a defect that could cause sudden acceleration. Class Action lawsuits have been undertaken on behalf of hundreds of Canadian Toyota customers. The suits have now become part of the settlement, which means that Toyota owners have agreed to a series of benefits in exchange for dropping the charges.
The agreement includes a customer support program that will last for a period of at least three years following settlement approval, covering defects in materials or workmanship related to the Electronic Throttle Control System (ETCS), up to a maximum of 240,000 km or 10 years after expiry of the factory warranty. It also includes the installation of a Brake Override System (BOS) to solve the issue of sudden acceleration, a one-time payment of $62.50 for those who's vehicle may already be equipped with BOS or are not able to be equipped with BOS, and four scholarships to engineering schools to fund research into automotive safety that will total $600,000.
Toyota owners have four options. They can accept the settlement, they can object and retain their right to sue Toyota, or they can do nothing by not joining the settlement and abandoning any claims against the company. By accepting the agreement, this option is the most expedient. Other options could take a long time to arrive at a conclusion.
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By Linda Aylesworth - autoExpert.ca