Toyota Canada settles recall class action

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Toyota Canada confirmed it would settle Canadian consumer claims related to Toyota recalls in 2009 and 2010. 

Financial figures have not been released, but a statement made by the law firm representing class action plaintiffs said the settlement is pending approval by courts in Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and Saskatchewan.

The settlement will in no way impact ongoing litigation for personal injury or wrongful death claims related to alleged unintended acceleration.

The lawsuit is related to owners and lessors of Toyota models affected by a faulty electronic throttle control system (ETCS-i). Starting in 2009 and stretching for more than a year, Toyota recalled over 14 million vehicles worldwide for a variety of issues including engine control modules, sticky accelerator pedals, issues with floor mats and more.

“It's a relief to know that Toyota will be offering substantial benefits to a very large number of Canadian consumers in order to resolve these actions” said representative plaintiff Steven Hamilton in a statement made public by Rochon Genova LLP. “I think that this is a fair settlement for Toyota owners across the country.”

Reports indicate the agreement will provide Toyota owners in the class with an enhanced Customer Support Warranty Program for a minimum of three years, which will cover all repair costs and the cost of adjustments related to certain vehicle components related to ETCS-i.  

As part of the settlement, Toyota owners will have their vehicles retrofit with a Brake Override System (BOS) free of charge, or will be eligible to cash payments in lieu of the BOS upgrade where their vehicle is not eligible to receive the BOS.  

In addition, Toyota has agreed to fund scholarships at four Canadian engineering schools totalling $600,000. Toyota has also provided funding for claims administration, notice costs and legal fees.

In addition, under the settlement, Toyota Canada will offer cash payments to eligible current owners and lessees who will not be offered BOS.  The proposed settlement would also establish four scholarships.

For its part, Toyota Canada said reliable scientific evidence and multiple independent evaluations have confirmed the safety of its electronic throttle control systems and that the benefits provided to Canadian customers under the economic loss settlement agreement are intended to “further demonstrate that consumers can continue to be confident in their vehicles and count on Toyota to stand behind its products.”
 
For more information on the economic loss settlement, consumers are asked to visit www.toyotaelsettlement.ca or call 1-855-823-0650.