Toyota urges judge to toss out unintended acceleration lawsuits

With the battle over its recent recall troubles taken to the court room in the form of more than 300 federal and state level courts, including a number of class actions, Toyota Motor Corp. has urged a federal judge to dismiss the suits. Toyota attorneys say that the suits are based on anecdotes, and not specific defects in Toyota vehicles.

“Plaintiffs infer negligence and strict liability on the part of Toyota based on unsubstantiated circumstantial information,” the automaker said in papers filed in federal court in Santa Ana, California, Sept. 13.

A hearing is scheduled for November 19 in Santa Ana, California. A Toyota spokesperson was unable to comment.

Consumer groups claim that the issues regarding unintended acceleration had been known since 2003, and that they are concerned of this problem reoccurring in the future. They also claim that Toyota has consistently marketed its vehicles as safe and claimed safety as one of the highest corporate priorities. Toyota responded by saying that the company could not be held liable for misrepresentation as the claims of quality and safety were opinions.

– By: Stephen Calogera

Source: Bloomberg