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Toyota Sued Over Acceleration Claims

By Aline Miranda on January 25, 2011

Reuters reports that 7 auto insurance companies, including Allstate, are suing Toyota Motor Corp. to recover money they paid in claims for car crashes blamed on unintended acceleration of Toyota vehicles. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, as many as 89 crash-related deaths since 2000 may be linked to sudden acceleration in Toyota and Lexus vehicles.

Toyota also faces an estimated $10 billion in potential civil liability in U.S. courts for consumer fraud, personal injury and wrongful death claims stemming from acceleration complaints.

The latest lawsuits, filed Thursday in Los Angeles County Superior Court, allege that Toyota ignored and hid a defect that causes some of its engines to surge out of control, and failed to install a brake-override system that would have prevented such accidents.