Product Liability Law

Toyota Accused of Secretly Buying Back Cars with Reported Sudden Acceleration

An amended complaint accuses Toyota of buying back cars with sudden acceleration problems and requiring the sellers to sign confidentiality agreements.

The documents filed Wednesday also claimed Toyota’s own technicians experienced unintended acceleration problems, according to the Associated Press and Reuters. The amended suit seeks to hold Toyota responsible for a drop in resale value of the company’s cars, the Wall Street Journal Law Blog reports.

The complaint (PDF posted by the Wall Street Journal Law Blog) in the multidistrict litigation is now about 700 pages long, not including hundreds of pages of exhibits, the National Law Journal reports.

Toyota acknowledges it bought back cars but says it did so to conduct an engineering analysis. The tests did not indicate any acceleration concerns, the company says. It also says the customers selling back the cars were asked, but not required, to sign liability releases, but they did not include a confidentiality provision.

Toyota says any acceleration problems were caused by floor mats or sticky gas pedals. Some plaintiffs say the problem is due to an defective electronic throttle control system.

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