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Toyota Agrees to Pay $29 Million for Unintended Acceleration, Safety Concerns

Craig McClellan

Toyota has reached an agreement in its lawsuit with 29 state attorneys general. This lawsuit is one of many stemming from allegations of auto defects that caused unintended acceleration.

In the settlement, Toyota agreed to:

  • Pay states $29 million
  • Set aside $5 million for customers who were forced to find alternative transportation during the 2009 / 2010 recalls
  • Inform prospective buyers of safety defects before reselling vehicles
  • Create a recall database with vehicle identification numbers (VINs)
  • No longer list "lemon law vehicles" as Toyota Certified Used Vehicles

California did not participate in the settlement, but its residents will still benefit from the safety portions of the settlement. "This settlement ensures Toyota drivers can have confidence in the safety of the vehicles they drive," Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette wrote about the settlement.

Toyota has now reached significant settlements in two of the largest unintended acceleration cases it faces. In December, the company agreed to set aside $1.1 billion for consumer lawsuits (economic).

Toyota believes that this settlement will help mend its reputation from the "legacy issues," but it does not accept blame for the unintended acceleration and brake issues it faced in 2009 and 2010. It continues to have a reputation as one of the safest car companies in the world, but that reputation has been blighted by its reluctance to announce additional safety concerns with its vehicles. Hopefully, the agreements it reached with the states attorneys general will help Toyota take steps to deserve its reputation.