Toyota customers that were told Japanese assembled vehicles were not as risk may want to check in with their dealers today. A third announcement has just been released stating that the Prius which is assembled outside of the USA may have the same or a new type of accelerator problem.
It seems that owners of the vehicles in question have been reporting problems where the cruse control can accelerate the vehicle into the 90 mile per hour range and that has some people wondering if this is not only a hardware but a software problem.
Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak is reported to have tried to contact both Toyota and the department of transportation after he experienced a dangerous situation.
Wozniak wrote in his Blog “Well, I have many models of Prius that got recalled, but I have a new model that didn’t get recalled. This new model has an accelerator that goes wild, but only under certain conditions of cruise control. And I can repeat it over and over and over again safely.”
Wozniak added, “This is software. It’s not a bad accelerator pedal. It’s very scary, but luckily for me, I can hit the brakes.”
Yes this could be a software problem but more likely it could be a problem with the throttle positioning sensor.
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood on Wednesday advised drivers of Toyota vehicles recalled because of sudden acceleration problems to stop driving them.
This statement has now been revised to suggest that owners simply take their vehicles to their dealers for repairs.
Unfortunately at this point there are no fixes for the problem so it is unknown if the Secretary is suggesting it is ok to drive the vehicles until a fix is available.
YouRepair suggests through their own staff’s experience with other vehicles with runaway accelerators that if you find your vehicle is accelerating uncontrollably you immediately shift the car’s transmission into neutral. At that point you should be able to stop the vehicle with your brakes.
If you can not stop by using your foot brakes then use your emergency brake.
This is a very dangerous situation that will only get worse as vehicles continue to be manufactured with computer control systems that separate the driver from control of the throttle and other basic controls.
It is important to remember that this problem can be found on almost every vehicle that has fuel injection.
If you find that you are having a problem with your vehicle contact your dealer where you purchased the vehicle immediately and have your vehicle towed to their location.. and ask to be reimbursed or take them to small claims court.
This is a situation where a redundant backup sensor could make the difference between life and death and the cost to the manufacturer should not be an issue when most vehicles now cost well over $20,000 for a base model and others … even crappy little compacts reaching the $30,000 plus mark.