Toyota will add a brake override system to all of its 2011 models, the maker says, as well as an airline-style data recorder to monitor events leading up to an after an accident.
The maker says the new Smart Stop system has already led to an 84% reduction in complaints about so-called sudden acceleration – an issue that has led Toyota to recall millions of cars, trucks and crossover over the last 12 months. Additional safety problems have resulted in additional recalls, all told involving about 9 million Toyota vehicles.
The sudden acceleration recalls – and a number of accidents, deaths and injuries associated with the problem – have also triggered a rash of lawsuits targeting the Japanese giant. The latest legal salvo has been fired by mega-insurer Allstate, which claims that defective accelerator pedals and other safety-related issues have led to accidents involving its clients.
The Northbrook, Illinois company cited 725 accidents involving its clients while driving Toyota where sudden acceleration was reported as a possible cause. Those collisions resulted in 304 injuries and 18 fatalities.
As a result, “Toyota should be held accountable for the financial impact of these accidents,” said Christina Loznicka, a spokeswoman for Allstate.