Toyota Motors Corp. reached an agreement with attorney generals from 29 states and an US territory. This was the latest move by the automaker to accelerate things regarding the recall issues. The deal was said to be worth $29 million.
The deal was announced Thursday and was approved by Toyota’s board in Japan in December. It came less than two months after Toyota reached a record setting $1.1 billion settlement of class-action claims that the automaker’s actions connected to the acceleration problem that had damaged the value of consumers’ vehicles. Last month, Toyota settled in a major wrongful death lawsuit that had been scheduled to go to trial this February.
According to the latest deal, Toyota will make more safety information about its cars available to consumers and will continue to come out with rapid response service teams to assist drivers with potential safety problems. The $29 million will be distributed between the states and American Samoa. California is not part of the lawsuit.
The attorney generals claimed that Toyota was guilty of unfair and deceptive business practices by withholding information from consumers about defective components that included accelerator pedals. State prosecutors also claimed that problems in Toyota’s communication chain between US and Japanese operations led to the lack of sharing vital safety data.
From late 2009, Toyota started a series of recalls connected to sudden acceleration accidents in its Toyota and Lexus vehicles. This led to the recall of 10 million cars and trucks across the globe. The automaker faced a number of state and federal investigations and its president Akio Toyoda even faced Congress to apologize.
Several years later, Toyota managed to regain the top spot in automotive sales across the globe and its stock has rebounded. A large part of the automaker’s work to move past the issue was focused on legal settlements. In late 2010, Toyota settled a wrongful death suit for $10 million. It involved a 2007 Lexus ES that killed four people including a member of the California Highway Patrol.
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