Skip to comments.Toyota Working on Prius Recall Fix
Posted on 03/09/2010 2:16:17 PM PST by JoeProBono
Toyota Motor Corp. said Tuesday that the Prius involved in a highly publicized acceleration incident on a California freeway along with hundreds of thousands of others will be recalled to prevent floor mats from pinning down the gas pedal.
But the recall hasn't been issued because Toyota "hasn't developed the remedy yet," said Toyota spokesman Brian Lyons.
In November, Toyota recalled several models including the Toyota Camry and Avalon sedans and the Lexus ES sedan to reshape the floor and gas pedals to prevent unsecured or ill-fitting floor mats from entrapping the pedal in an open position.
As part of those recalls, Toyota said Prius hybrids from the 2004 to 2009 model years would be recalled in the future to address the same issue.
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
It Ain’t the damn floor mats
I wonder if we will ever know what went wrong in the software (if that was the problem). Wouldn’t it be embarrassing if it was a numeric overflow or underflow. (The gas pedal setting went to -1, which just happens to mean 65535 to the engine controller. Zoom!)
1. To what extent does Toyota know with reasonable certainty the actual cause of any of these accelerations?
2. To what extent is Toyota “fixing” problems where it does not know the cause?
3. To what extent does Toyota know the true numbers of accereration incidents, where the cause of the incident is known?
4. To what extent is Toyota “fixing” problems where Toyota doubts there is even a problem to begin with?
5. Should I take my 2009 Matrix in to get the silly metal bar thingy installed? Am I increasing risk? Decreasing risk? On a scale of -100 to +100, at what confidence?
Shouldn’t you discuss this with your dealer?
If you have a 2009 Matrix it’s still under warrenty isn’t it?
Toyota might just be upgrading to the “latest and greatest” software.
If I was the Toyota CEO-I would immediately suspend all operations in the US, lay off every American worker, and move to Mexico. Let Obama tell the nation why one the top 3 car manufacturers just gave the finger to America..
Bummer would scream “You chickens!”
How do you know? Toyota sent an expert to look at the car that accelerated yesterday. How do you know they didn’t find the floor mat jammed into the pedal?
I have a 2004 Prius, and the floor mat pegs somehow fell out, and the mat was moving all over the place, and getting in the way of the pedal. We replaced the pegs, but I bet a lot of people don’t.
THe pedal is pretty small, and the front end goes to the floor, so it’s pretty easy for the mat to get over top of it and hold it down. Hasn’t happened to me.
Now, I don’t know if the mat is the problem or not, but I’m not ready to pronounce that it isn’t. I’m interested in what Toyota found out from the car from yesterday — it’s a perfect case.
The car was stuck on, the guy shut it off while it was stuck on, and it hasn’t been started or moved since — so the codes should be stored, and if there was a physical issue, it would still be there.
I’m nervous about the fly-by-wire nature of cars. It bugs me that I floor the car, and because the wheel slips it stops giving it power for a second. I wish they had spent the extra couple of bucks to put a “brake overrides gas pedal sensor” circuit into the car, especially since they already have a brake switch to shut off the cruise control.
I suppose if folks were truly worried about this they could TAKE OUT THE MATS!!!!!
Got the Matrix recall letter.
As best as I can discern, to the extent to which these acceleration events do not have driver-causes:
— Toyota doesn’t know why these events occur
— The fix is no more proven safe than the unfixed
— The events are very, very, very rare
— An untested fix to a very rare problem moves the
confidence level only slightly, in an unknown direction
Remember, one cannot assume that the untested fix to an unknown problem provides a safer outcome.
Am I missing some data?
This seems to be the key point. Frankly, I've had Toyota, GM, and Ford autos/vans/trucks in the past 30 years and from a quality/durability standpoint Toyota wins hands down. All of the GM and Ford products have had more serious callbacks with very frequent and in my mind more serious problems.
to reshape the floor and gas pedals to prevent unsecured or ill-fitting floor mats from entrapping the pedal in an open positionToo bad cars can't be fitted with some kind of IQ sensor. Thanks JoeProBono.
Some people have, and the problem continued. In the fatal crash involving a CHP officer, the floormats were in the trunk.
That’s false. The official cause was the floor mats.
You’re thinking of something else.
He is probably confusing that incident with another Toyota that accelerated out of control and killed all four occupants. The Avalon in Southlake, TX was found in a pond with the floor mats in the trunk.
Yes, I just found it. Apparently, no cause was determined, but the driver did have epilepsy.
This is what Toyota gets for sub-contracting the throttle control software out to Microsoft.
All true statements. However, his autopsy revealed that epilepsy was not to blame.
I didn’t know that. I wasn’t aware they could even determine one way or the other whether he had a recent seizure since he died from drowning (as did the other passengers).
I guess the cause still remains unknown.
6. To what extent do we know that this whole thing isn’t one part mass hysteria and one part witch hunt?
You may be right. This is the article I read which lead me to believe that epilepsy was ruled out:
“And an autopsy released today said there was no evidence he had a seizure before the crash.”
No evidence does not necessarily mean it didn’t happen.
You are correct, this was the incident I was getting confused with.
However, it doesn’t mean he did have a seizure either.
There have been at least a couple of incidents caught on 911 tape where it’s pretty clear that the floor mats aren’t the problem.
Going 75 down the Interstate is not a good place to get the “blue screen of death”. But now we know why Toyota was dragging their feet. It was the test of a fix.
Followup to the story of the guy that managed to drive a Toyota with a stuck throttle to a dealership. Wasn’t the floormats at all.
As someone else commented at the link, I wouldn’t be surprised at all if the car was currently being dissected by Hyundai to investigate what happened.
Notice that he could dial 911 and talk while supposedly panicked. Yet he claims he didn’t put the car in neutral because he “didn’t know if the car would flip”...!!!
Stopping these vehicles is not rocket science. A flick of the wrist would have put the car in neutral and the breaks would have easily stopped the car very quickly.
Are there problems with Toyota’s accelerators? Yes. But there is little reason for deaths or injuries.
Further, I still firmly believe that a large number of the “unintended acceleration” incidents are human-error. Stuff under/on the pedal, folks hitting the wrong pedal (I know more than one person who has done this with a resulting accident, swearing it was the gas pedal - when I have seen them both accidentally hit the gas instead of the break more than once before).
But check out that article from Car and Driver. A real eye-opener.