Monday, February 22, 2010

Illinois professor reports that Toyota does have problem with electronic acceleration system; diagnosis codes not returned; Brian Ross reports on ABC

Brian Ross and Joseph Rhee of ABC News are reporting that a problem in Toyota’s electronic acceleration system prevents the car’s “normal” onboard diagnosis circuitry from detecting short circuits that could cause sudden accelerations.

Professor David Gilbert of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale (which I visited in 2000 to see a law student) had Brian Ross demonstrate the problem with road tests.

Toyota has been saying that it can fix the problem with a brace to prevent the pedal from sticking.

The link to the story is here.

The title of the news story (run tonight on World News Tonight) is “Expert: Electronic Design Flaw Linked to Runaway Toyotas: “. Auto Professor Says Defect in Toyota's 'Fail Safe' System for Acceleration Creates Dangerous Condition."

In the test drive, even ABC investigative reporter Brian Ross could not get himself to use neutral properly.

Update: Feb. 23

NBC Nightly News adds this segment on Toyota's likely electrical problems, associted with wireless technology (for the accelerator!), as covered in Congressional hearings lead ny Rep Waxman.

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Update: March 8

Toyota says it has repeated the professor's experiments and disputes the findings, which it says were manipulated (ABC News).

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