Toyota acceleration case settlement tops $1B

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Toyota logoToyota Motor Co. has announced an agreement worth more than $1 billion to settle a lawsuit involving unintended acceleration in some of its vehicles.

Under terms of the settlement, filed Wednesday in federal court in Santa Ana, Toyota will install a brake-override system in an estimated 3.25 million vehicles and compensate car owners for the alleged reduced value of the vehicles, among other terms.

According to attorneys for the plaintiffs, the estimated value of the settlement makes it the largest of its kind, although there have been larger non-auto industry class settlements in recent years. They said the settlement provides that 16 million current Toyota owners will be eligible for a customer care plan that provide a warranty for certain parts alleged to be tied to unintended acceleration claims.

After a fiery crash of a Lexus, Toyota’s luxury brand, took four lives near San Diego in August 2009, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration concluded that floor mats could entrap pedals in Toyota vehicles, leading the Japanese automaker to issue its largest recall ever. That, in turn, led to a series of subsequent investigations and recalls stretching over several years.

Read more at latimes.com.