Toyota, Justice Department Agree on $1.2 Billion Settlement

Toyota Tacoma

In the largest criminal penalty exacted against any U.S. automaker, the U.S. Justice Department and Toyota Motor Corp. came to a $1.2 billion settlement Wednesday. The Justice Department conducted a four-year federal criminal probe independent of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and congressional investigations regarding reported unintended acceleration of certain Toyota models during 2009 and 2010.

According to USA Today, Christopher P. Reynolds, Toyota's chief legal officer, noted Toyota is looking forward to putting this unfortunate chapter behind it and improving customer and safety communications. Toyota says the penalty will be charged to this fiscal year, ending March 31.

Toyota's position regarding the unintended acceleration issues were that certain types of wedged floormats could have resulted in the several unfortunate runaway vehicle situations. The Justice Department's position was that Toyota deceived and mislead customers into thinking the issue was resolved and all affected vehicles had been addressed, even suggesting Toyota had taken steps to hide related information from NHTSA about another "sticking" accelerator issue not related to the original investigation.

Toyota, in a prepared press release (link), neither confirms nor denies these accusations but confirms the settlement agreement, noting it is accepting responsibility and working to improve its processes and products. Under the agreement, the government will halt any further prosecution after three years and then dismiss its case as long as Toyota makes the required payment and complies with all terms of the settlement, which includes third-party monitoring of safety policies.

How this settlement might affect the production or design of future pickup trucks (Tacoma or Tundra) remains to be seen. All we know is that the fine is much less than one-half of 1 percent of the profits Toyota made in worldwide sales in the 2010 fiscal year.

To read the exact filings about the case against Toyota and the deferred prosecution agreement, click here.

Image by Joe Bruzek,


I wonder how GMC will fare?

In the mental health field, I often see where denial gets people. I'd prefer to have a manufacturer who accepts the problem and commits to making necessary changes by issuing recalls. There's a life lesson for everyone in this story.

"Car manufacturer Toyota has agreed to pay a staggering $1.2 billion to avoid prosecution for covering up severe safety problems with “unintended acceleration,” according to court documents, and continuing to make cars with parts the FBI said Toyota “knew were deadly.”

New Ford Unintended Acceleration Class Action Lawsuit Filed

@HemiV8 - every brand has reports of "unintended acceleration".

Several years ago a person had blogged on this site looking for information related to the problem with Dodge diesels as their son was killed in one.

After Toyota pays that fine, they will never be able to afford to pay me to buy one!

I will continue to buy Toyotas, can't beat there durability and reliability, solid as hell. They we continue to sales millions of trucks and cars worldwide because they make damn good vehicles.

'I wonder how GMC will fare?'

@Lou, I was thinking as much. GMC (GM)'c' - same thing might be in for a ride. Those GMC-Buick dealers are already fighting it out with the Chevrolet-Cadillac dealers. Pertaining to trucks, Silverado dealers fighting with Sierra dealers over leather colors and even engine choices. Apparently High Country only comes in that crappy brownish color and they're losing potential sales. I didn't get into the engine stuff. Typical of this company. And with the recall stuff and possible recalls over the 800 model trucks for rusted brake lines, frames and body panels, I'm not sure we've seen the last of GMC on the nightly news.

I don't pay know never mind to how do car makers build they stuff. I just by best the looking and most comfertible won.

C'mon guys.

Today we have a gangster mentality running the Department of Justice in this administration. They shake people down just like the street gangs do. It's all back-room BS.

DOJ is just another corrupted agency. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms, IRS, EPA, Department of Education.

When I see a story like this it almost makes me want to buy a bleeping Tundra.

Here is some links on SUA.

2009 Model year Rates per 100,000 units.

VW/Audi......... 11.5
Toyota/Lexus.. 7.5
Ford.............. 1.1
Chrysler........ 0.5
GMC............. 0.4

The actual peak for all brands was around 1999.

Here is a book on the topic.

This is borrowed from a data table of statistics from 2005 - 2009:
Incidents per 100,000 vehicles sold

Toyota....... 4.81
Ford.......... 3.12
Chrysler..... 1.72
Honda....... 1.26
Nissan....... 1.07
GMC.......... 0.81

One needs to realize that these are reports or complaints NOT proven or legitimate cases of UA.

The SUA rate for Toyota skyrocketed with all of the publicity and many jumped on the Class Action Suit bandwagon.

My wife and I received a letter from a Law Firm last year wanting us to join their suit against Toyota for no other reason than the fact that our Sienna was on their list even though it was not affected and did not use a CTS pedal and came from the factory with anchored floor mats.

@papa jim - I agree that there was a problem at Toyota but it became a huge politicized circus. The economy was tanking and the public wanted a sacrifice. It was no different than a corrupt collapsing Roman empire feeding Christians to the lions in the Coliseum.

@Alex - companies like people will try to get away with as much as they possibly can. Every car company has tried to hide problems.
Toyota has been compared to GMC as a corporation that is top heavy and has many ingrained factions. That was a huge problem for Mulally at Ford and since he fixed that issue they have done very well.

Beats the heck out of a Chryler Fiat joke


Do you remember the name Jamie Gorelick?

Even though she had no previous training nor experience in finance, Jamie Gorelick was appointed Vice Chairman of Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) from 1997 to 2003.

She cashed in at Fannie. Was paid a huge salary in return for her connections in the White House and DOJ.

During her time at Fannie they had a $10 billion accounting scandal. Who did she chose to replace her when she worked for President Clinton? Eric Holder.

The same Eric Holder who now runs the DOJ was part of a firm that shook down major banking lobbyists before he was appointed to serve at the Justice Dept.


I find it funny you really only show up to troll with disinformation usually when their is a thread about Toyota or someone mentions Tundra or Tacoma. I'm not here to steer you to Toyota as you are happy where you are and I don't sell them but I do have a question. Do you have another name you post under on Non-Toyota threads?

And where does the money go ...would Mr and Mrs. Obama get any of it ?? to put towards there wasteful spending.... Maybe a trip around the world....

@papa jim- power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

@Lou, that's true it is in human nature to do that. No guy would ask a hot girl on a date and say "oh by the way, I have 17 kids from 6 different mothers, a bunch of psychiatric disorders, and genital herpes. She would have to find out the dangerous way, just like the Toyota driver.

AD: So what, I choose to spend my money on American brands, and I do not only mean four wheel types, but those with only two, and might even think about 3, but as far as Toyota? would never dream of it! Sure you could say the domestics were terrible back in the 70's and 80's, but I still bought them! and would never and have never any Japanese imports! and if more of us felt that way, our Country would be in a better place right now!

hemi lol

Why would it be a joke that FCA has never been fined $1.4 billion for knowingly making death traps?

Because we are on a PUTC, how are the Turdra sales these days?

Why does LouBC bring GMC into the discussion about Toyoyo disaster ??
Jealous of Chevys superiority maybe..LLL

Why does LouBC bring GMC into the discussion about Toyoyo disaster ??
Jealous of Chevys superiority maybe..LLL

chevys superiority? lol, Chevy was loosing sales before all their recent recalls.

papa jim will say it's crappy economy, while Ford and Ram sell more, or atleast gain market share, while GM goes downhill.

Next papa jim will say incentives and price cuts are only on Ford and Ram, which is a big UNTRUE, as I posted something from February where GM was raisibg incentives (and in the last rwo weeks, they are raising them, AGAIN!

Of course Tyler will jump in and spin it two the "GM barely has their 2015 HDs out" kidding, but you MISS THE POINT, GM is raising incentives cause the "superior" lol, 1500 GMs aren't selling as hoped for.

Lou's comment is directed on the fact GM will face this same story, soon.

@hemi lol (a hemi laughs at an I force, lol! 17 mpg, bah!) showing your hatred towards Chrysler (or I mean, your closest competitor, car salesman like of you) Atleast I have given credit to Toyota for things on here, if they would improve, I would give more credit. Sorry bout that, don't blame me.

Very much agreed. The "Christians to the Lions" scenario. These incidents are virtually unheard outside of NA, someone was playing the "Unfair advantage" card.

@Robert Ryan - Lawyers are the ones that keep corporations from disclosing errors and lawyers jump all over the chance to make big money when errors occur.
It is a vicious circle.

@Alex - see the comment to Robert Ryan and is Toyota the hot girl and the dude with everything to hide are the lawyers?


Please give us all an update when RAM sales figures reach or equal the GM Twins. It might take some time.

Something tells me RAM is going to regret killing the Dakota, especially when the new Colorado/Canyon twins hit the dealer lots this fall.

Opening day NFL in September: Can you hear it now???

@papa jim
I am not too concerned about Ram's sales figures. The monthly sales figures PUTC post shows a steady increase for Ram, while a small decrease for GM. Given that GM has the newest truck in the segment, one might expect it to be the other way around. I'm not saying this to stir up a debate, because sales figures aren't everything. It's just like how we don't measure GM's success by if the twins have outsold Ford. I can't say I've ever heard of that happening(has it ever happened?).
Ram's management has reported strong sales and an increase in market share. That's all that's important really. If Chrysler were as big as GM, then being 3rd in sales would be a much bigger problem. Since Chrysler is smaller than GM, less sales is okay. Mainly what needs to happen is that sales are generating profit and the business is growing. If those 2 things are happening then there isn't much to worry about and management has to be doing some stuff right.

Ive Got a 2014 Silverado LTZ 4x4 and Ive been a Chevy man my whole life.. but there is a smorgus board of issues with these trucks, Clunks, rattles, vibrations, false advertisment, poor "dismal" fuel economy after the update, crappy paint, cheap flimsy beads, foggy head lights.. and extended cranks with puffs of black smoke when below freezing.. NONE of which GM stands by or recognzes as issues... just go check out it really is a joke.. I am seriously thinking of trading in to a 14 Ram... what GM is doign right now is a complete joke and sales is prooving my point.

@ everyone

I did not post on this thread AT ALL. so whoever the imposter is who cares. this may be my last post on this JOKE of a website. shallow comments like that are a pathetic attempt to discredit someone they are threatened by.







Chevrolet and Ford have far more dealers than does Dodge/Ram and that alone keeps Dodge/Ram from being able to over take Chevrolet.

1, Since Chrysler is smaller than GM, less sales is okay. Mainly what needs to happen is that sales are generating profit and the business is growing. If those 2 things are happening then there isn't much to worry about and management has to be doing some stuff right.

2, Chevrolet and Ford have far more dealers than does Dodge/Ram and that alone keeps Dodge/Ram from being able to over take Chevrolet.

@Hemi Monster @Ram 4x4

Really? c'mon guys!

That kind of short-weiner talk makes you look bad. Just give GM or Ford their props and move on.

The current crop of RAM trucks is poised to do big things, but that riff about GM/Ford having more dealers??? Why not just wear a dress?

And what about "Since Chrysler is smaller than GM, less sales is okay."

That kind of line will impress the fat girls every time. Good luck guys!

All this brand bashing is enough to make me want to buy only Japanese. Are some of you paid to bash brands? Do you think Toyota is the only one to have safety recalls? You act like children. Growup!

Toyota management members should be in prison.

This reminded me of the Audi's that use to catch on fire, I was going up the Coquihalla highway it has a long 7% grade then a snow shed and 8% grade. There is a turn out after the snow shed and the ground was black from burning vehicles, I was on a service call to the top rest area, as I cleared the snow shed there was a car smoking under the hood, I stopped and backed up towards it, it was too far gone to try and put it out I told the guy to open the trunk and get whatever he wanted out of the vehicle. While doing this who should drive by but an Audi then a truck with Audi test vehicle posted on the side then anouther Audi. I took the guy up to the old toll booth so he could get a phone, the truck was there he did not seem to be happy, they were talking a forign language but from the screams he seemed to be making his point. I unloaded his stuff and left.
Remember when you have to lie to make a point you are a fool. The house controls the spending, you should know that unless you failed kindergarten.
Just a thought!

Toyota is spending so much money on fines that they save costs by refusing new customers warranty claims. I had a 2011 Tacoma, my heater blower motor made noise, my alloy wheels and the inside of my doors rusted out and they refused to repair or replace anything saying I abused it after owing it for 6 months and 4000 miles.
So I traded it in for a new F-150 while I could get a good trade-in price for it, now my V8 F-150 is getting BETTER gas mileage than the V6 Tacoma and in the winter the heater blows hot air very quickly after first start up that keeps me toasty warm where with the Tacoma I had to drive 15 miles before it blew hot air.
The Tacoma is not designed for cold weather, its not insulated, the glass is paper thin, the heater doesn't heat fast enough to defrost the windshield!

BIG Daddy Ram ? I really like the Ram 1500 on the test drive, but I have 2 issues, that dial gear shift selector on the dash ..... whimppy.....whimppy.......whimpy! and those rear coil springs! Other than that the Ram 1500 is a great truck!

@John Pringle

did you ever read Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas?

From the sound of it you had a chance encounter with Hunter S Thompson, probably the driver of the Audi.

Do you know what non sequitur means? Just curious.

"In the largest criminal penalty exacted against any U.S. automaker, the U.S. Justice Department and Toyota Motor Corp. came to a $1.2 billion settlement Wednesday. "

Toyota, a U.S. automaker? Baa-ha-ha-ha-haaaaaa!!!!!

Ok, enough trolling for me...I hope Toyota will learn from all of this, although it is too little too late for some.

@Liam- they build in the USA. They sell in the USA and have a head office in the USA.

Toyota owner, turned consumer activist-blogger, Parris Boyd has been blogging about what he calls “The Recall King” (a.k.a. Toyota) for years. His blog, “Beware of Toyota. Their next victim may be YOU…,” was initially an outlet for his frustration with Toyota--after his MR2 Spyder’s engine disintegrated at low mileage. What Parris faced was an unresponsive, stonewalling company operating within a state of denial.

During the height of Toyota’s engine oil SLUDGE debacle, Parris created his blog with the goal of using his free speech to help other similarly-affected Toyota owners. He also wanted the public to know just how Toyota and its dealerships treated their “valued customers.” Parris’s Blogger website currently receives over 100 views a day!

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