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Engine failures in MR2 Spyders

6/11/2014 - Updated the original post by entering direct links to reference material, and added remarks about the legal issues involved with...

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Bloomberg covers for Toyota in sudden unintended acceleration case - blocks me from commenting

Last Friday, I e-mailed Paul Barrett - the presstitute media guy who wrote the one-sided, hand-wringin' article misrepresenting the facts about Toyota - that I was unable to log in to post comments on his article. I also filled out one of Bloomberg's online feedback forms and told them about the problems I was having getting logged in. Frankly, I had forgotten about Bloomberg's previous censorship (removal) of my comments about Toyota. Came across my earlier blog post quite by accident.

As of today, I continue to be blocked from posting comments on Mr. Barrett's sleazy article. I tried using Disqus, clicked icons for my Facebook, Twitter, and Google accounts, and everything still goes haywire.

Is there a method to Bloomberg's madness?

Any comments regarding Barrett's article were a long time coming. Kinda strange. Then Dr. Antony Anderson's superb rebuttal showed up. After a couple of days, one other comment critical of Toyota appeared. Meanwhile, I was discussing the weird comment situation with a friend. I speculated that trolls were staying quiet in an effort to avoid drawing attention to the Oklahoma case and the facts regarding Toyota being found guilty in a sudden unintended acceleration event. Facts about the Oklahoma case, highlighting Toyota - and NHTSA's - culpability in sudden unintended acceleration were startin' to come out, spreading like wildfire all over the Internet, including my blog.

Interestingly enough, an anonymous effort to rebut a comment I published (11/8/2013 3:28:01 PM) tried to convince me (11/8/2013 3:54:47 PM) - "Two million blogs will do nothing !" - that blogging about Toyota wouldn't make any difference. Of course, I replied (11/8/2013 6:02:12 PM) that such activities do make a difference, which is why businesses - especially coverup operations like Toyota - hire so-called "reputation management" companies to steer conversations, post fake reviews, etc. I referenced a recent court case involving a gang of corporate hirees gettin' sued for posting such garbage on Edmonds.com

Wouldn't ya know it? Today, a barrage of anonymous comments - including blabber attempting to defend Toyota - have suddenly appeared regarding Barrett's article. And I still can't get logged in...

Isn't it a shame that corporate-controlled America doesn't have a free press?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Another recall. Bloomberg ignores evidence of Toyota's software causing sudden unintended acceleration

Toyota's 2013 recall parade is marchin' right along. This time, it's defective valve springs in pickups and SUVs that can cause an engine to stop running. And this is not the first time the Recall King has found valve springs to be a manufacturing challenge. Amidst a 2010 valve-spring recall, a YouTube video appeared - along with an article on AutoBlog.com - addressing Toyota's problem with those pesky valve springs. C'mon, Recall King. Do tell. What's really going on with those springs?

Might cause an engine to stop running? What a hoot. For years, there have been formal complaints and postings all over the Internet about engines suddenly disintegrating in MR2 Spyders, and the Recall King hasn't seen fit to do anything other than stonewall. But of course, MR2 Spyders - unlike pickups and SUVs - are limited production vehicles, and this puts their owners at an extreme disadvantage when dealing with a corporate slob like Toyota. Lousy products and an equally lousy attitude toward customers. And talk about deceptive advertising. It's kinda hard to "Go Places" when your engine won't run. Even harder when your bank account has been depleted by the better part of $10,000...

Meanwhile, the "presstitute" media (as former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Dr. Paul Craig Roberts calls it) is rushing to Toyota's aid now that an Oklahoma jury has handed down a guilty verdict in a sudden unintended acceleration case. Enter this one-sided, hand-wringin' article from Bloomberg, bemoaning the way courts are allowing lawsuits to proceed against poor ol' Toyota. Is anyone fooled? I've been blocked from commenting - weird things happen when I try to log in - and this is not the first time I've had problems getting comments published by Bloomberg. Fortunately, noted electrical engineer Dr. Antony Anderson submitted a comment offering a fantastic rebuttal to Paul Barrett's sheer blabber. Here's an excerpt from Dr. Anderson's remarks:  

"If (Toyota) had fitted kill switches, very few people would have been killed and there would have been little or no litigation. Weeping crocodile tears 'about the individuals and families of anyone in an accident involving one of our vehicles' is no substitute for killing sudden accelerations stone dead with a device that will restrict fuel supply or air to the engine in an emergency."  

Facts are starting to emerge - much of the technical data revealed in the Oklahoma trial is still secret - about Toyota's well-orchestrated efforts to conceal pertinent information about their Electronic Control Throttle System (ECTS) and their refusal to install relatively simple safety measures. The Recall King, NHTSA, and presstitute media gang is gettin' nervous.

Toyota's ad, "Let's Go Places" should include the kind of places you're liable to go if you purchase their products. The hospital, perhaps? Court? Or how about prison? Just ask Koua Fong Lee.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sudden unintended acceleration trial exposed Toyota's shameful conduct

"We proved at trial that the software that controlled the ETCS was defectively designed and failed to conform to industry standards. Moreover, the jury was convinced that Toyota was fully aware of problems with the system, but concealed them from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the public and its customers." Jere I. Beasley, Beasley and Allen Law Firm

SO thrilling that a law firm finally dared to challenge the absurd notion that Toyota's ongoing problems with sudden, unintended acceleration were attributable to floor mats, beer cans, the driver's age, etc. ad nauseum. Once done, Plaintiffs were rewarded with a guilty verdict after a jury in Oklahoma heard the facts about the Recall King's shenanigans involving its electronic throttle control system (ETCS). Enough to prompt the jury to declare that Toyota acted with "reckless disregard" of the Plaintiffs' rights.

In a scathing summation of trial highlights, Plaintiffs' attorney's have not been bashful  regarding Toyota's behavior. Reminiscent of the Associated Press investigation concluding that Toyota is deceitful when sued, it's now obvious that Toyota is deceitful not only when sued. Toyota is deceitful period:

"Toyota’s conduct from the time the ETCS was designed has been shameful. This jury had the courage to let Toyota and the public know that Toyota was reckless and that the automaker had covered up a known defect in the ETCS."

I'll pose the question again: Why should anyone trust anything Toyota says?

Isn't it a outrage that citizens in the sweet land of "liberty and justice for all" have little recourse against slob corporations other than filing expensive, risky, and time-consuming lawsuits? Toyota's friends at NHTSA jumped at the chance to champion NASA's "investigation" of Toyota's sudden, unintended acceleration, and we now have solid evidence that - as common sense dictated all along - NASA's "investigation" left much to be desired:

"Although NASA investigated Toyota’s software, Toyota withheld certain important software source code from NASA and misrepresented the existence of vital memory protection characteristics of the Camry throttle control system."

And when it comes to NHTSA:

"...in reporting to NHTSA, Toyota removed the search term “surge” and only used the term “mat,” which resulted in only 124 claims being reported to the government agency. This was a deliberate move on Toyota’s part and was designed to hide a known defect."

NHTSA wasn't hoodwinked. NHTSA was willfully hoodwinked. And we can expect proof of that infuriating fact to emerge as NHTSA refuses to take action against their friend Toyota in spite of technical disclosures - so far kept secret from the public - now referenced in court records.

Indisputable evidence of the best system money can buy. A government of dishonest, corporate-financed thugs - Repukes and Demagogues alike - who run roughshod over the citizenry. Is anyone surprised that nothing has been done about all those engine failures in MR2 Spyders?

Friday, November 1, 2013

Guilty verdict in unintended acceleration case has Toyota runnin' scared

Not too scared of course, 'cause the Recall King can depend on a well-established network of government and industry cohorts to keep incriminating evidence quiet. Nonetheless, an Oklahoma jury's guilty verdict in a sudden unintended acceleration case is a troublesome development for T(he) O(ne) Y(ou) O(ught) T(o) A(void). The lawuit involved the crash of a 2005 Camry that left one woman dead, another seriously injured. Trial highlights featured testimony from renowned software expert Michael Barr confirming bugs in Toyota's software. Evidence of 150 feet of skid marks from the plaintiff's tires corroborated Mr. Barr's findings.

The jury went even further, stating that "the automaker exhibited 'reckless disregard' in its response to a faulty electronic throttle system." Doncha jus' love it when people put things in perspective?

Now we can speculate (not to worry - after all, it only concerns public safety) as to how much of the incriminating evidence ("You know, I'm not allowed to say what Task X is.") presented at the trial will be made available to the general public. Once the guilty verdict was announced, the ol' Recall King immediately hushed things up - and avoided a punitive damages determination - by suddenly reaching a settlement, which we can rest assured included a confidentiality agreement and made it crystal clear that Toyota wasn't admitting - oh, thank goodness - to any wrongdoing. Such out-of-court settlements are one of the Recall King's favorite maneuvers. Reminds me of the Toyota rep I spoke with about engine failures in MR2 Spyders saying he "didn't want to hear" about complaints galore posted all over the Internet.

"What happens when an automaker decides to wing it and play by their own rules? To disregard the rigorous standards, best practices, and checks and balances required of such software (and hardware) design? People are killed, reputations ruined, and billions of dollars are paid out. That's what happens." (link to article)

Slob government, run by slob corporations. Complete with a two-headed, one party SHAM of an electoral system, and a gullible citizenry that believes it can change the system by voting. The only thing I can't figure out is whether to laugh... or whether to cry.

Update 1/1/2013 - A similar case - federal, this time - was scheduled to start next week, but has now been delayed until March due to (hee hee) "court congestion." Somehow, I'm reminded of the old TV series, "Wagon Train."

Update 2/14/2014 - Toyota is now seeking a "global settlement" for cases involving sudden unintended acceleration.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Another big recall. Blogger targets Akio.

Apparently, Toyota is tryin' to get in a few more big recalls before 2013 runs out. The latest recall (fifth biggie for the year, second recall in the past week) involves a whopping 885,000 units, featuring - of all things - spiders tampering with air bag deployment. Call this their "Halloween recall," bringing the total number of recalled units to six million for 2013. According to Toyota (I won't belabor that one), the nasty little critters can even play havoc with the steering. Toyota is "aware" of multiple instances of air bag, etc. malfunctions, resulting in two "minor" injuries.

Don't blame it all on spiders, jus' some of it, sez the Recall King. Now that's good advice. An Omaha woman has just been awarded $6.2 million in her airbag lawsuit dating back to a Lexus crash in 2007. The jury deliberated all of four and a half hours to conclude that not only was the airbag defective, but "the car did not 'conform' to the generally recognized and prevailing state of the art in the industry at the time the 2004 Lexus ES 330 was first sold by Toyota.”

Spiders? Hmm... Reminds me of all those MR2 "Spyders" mysteriously plagued by suddenly disintegratin' engines. Yessir, the 'ol Recall King definitely has a bug problem. Great material for another story in Design News' "Made by Monkeys" section.

Meanwhile, one of Toyota's many irrate customers has created a blog - and a Facebook page - titled "Route 44 Toyota Sold Me A Lemon." Her 10/18/2013 blog post, "Dear Mr. Akio Toyoda:" calls out none other than the Godfather - er I mean the Prince - himself. Reminds me of a post I made several years ago.

Keep these 2013 recalls - failing engines, brakes, airbags, etc. ad nauseum - goin', Toyota. 'Specially those recalls of recalls when the initial recall failed to fix the recall problem. Keep it up. Ya might be able to set another record.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Design News publishes my article

Just want to extend my heartfelt appreciation to Rob Spiegel and Design News for publishing my article about the pre-cat problem in MR2 Spyders. The "Made by Monkeys" section is SO appropriately titled for stories about Recall King Toyota.

I'm honored - sure makes my day :-)

Update 10/16/2013 -
Interesting comment by tekochip: 
"Another example of complex systems failing in complex ways. As the pre-catalyst fails you would think that the exhaust gas pressure would keep all the containments from flowing back into the engine, but the MR2 engine features variable valve timing. Under some conditions the valves change their timing to allow a little exhaust gas back into the cylinders, sort of a vale timing version of EGR. So, with the variable valve timing sucking in exhaust and the pre-catalyst failing, the result is containments scoring the cylinder walls and valves."
Rob Spiegel chimed in, confirming that the pre-cat problem is all over the Internet:  
"This seems to be a widespread problem with this model. A quick Google search found TONS AND TONS (emphasis mine) of references to pre-cat problems."
Absolute disgrace that government allows corporations like Toyota to kick consumers around with such impunity.

Update 10/19/2013 - I'm delighted to see comments focusing on pre-cat environmental considerations and the EPA. Instead of coddling Toyota with wrist-slappin' fines, and allowing them to cut deals whereby Toyota makes no admission of wrongdoing, government should have reigned the Recall King in long ago on the pre-cat issue.   

Monday, October 7, 2013

Toyota told to conduct "awareness campaign"

"The campaign will raise awareness on the effective use of the (brake override) system and how to deal with inability to control or stop the car."

Uh oh. Now we learn that Toyota - that unabashed paragon of public safety - had to be "instructed" to launch a public awareness campaign, addressing issues associated with the Recall King's never-ending sudden unintended acceleration problems. Saudi Arabia's government - reminiscent of Japan's response when an heir to the Imperial Throne was endangered - is taking the issue seriously.

I wish our own government would "instruct" the Recall King to address those engine failures in MR2 Spyders. With owners being forced to either remove pre-cats (illegal for street use) or risk ruined engines and exhaust systems, it's obvious that neither Uncle Sam nor Toyota are really all that concerned with air pollution. Isn't it a hoot that Toyota presents itself as some sort of "green machine" operation? How many Spyders are being driven on the streets with owner-altered emission control systems?

When it comes to Toyota, where is the much ballyhooed Environmental Protection Agency? Hey, hey, EPA: Not questioning yer integrity, but the pre-cat issue has been all over the Internet for the last 13 years.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Massive Toyota recalls continue for 2013

"Toyota is first to all other companies in its total amount of recalled vehicles worldwide, and this is not the first time that Toyota has recalled hundreds of thousands of vehicles this year." Shannon Walsh, WebProNews

Been a while since I've posted, but it certainly hasn't been for lack of subject matter. Amidst lawsuits galore over sudden, unintended acceleration, Recall King Toyota has spotlighted their incompetence by demonstrating that the parade of defects - eight major recalls for 2013 - in their obviously lousy products is far from over. How can anyone still argue - with a straight face - that the "Toyota Way" is now new and improved?

'Bout a year ago, it leaked out that Toyota customers need "reassuring" that their vehicles are safe. Wow. If they needed "reassuring" then, what do they need now? Frankly, I'm beginning to doubt mainstream media's claims that the Recall King has "bounced back" from their sales plunge of recent years.

And when it comes to keeping things quiet...

One of the most hearbreaking stories has to do with the death of 29 year old Chris Eves when his new Tundra veered off the road and hit a tree. Hair and scalp tissue was found near the accelerator, and Chris' dad refuses to be silenced, choosing to speak out instead of accepting Toyota's offer of what amounts to hush money. If there's anything the ol' Recall King is good at, it's confidentiality agreements and cozy deals with NHTSA which allow Toyota to settle "without any admission of wrongdoing."

Toyota's attitude toward customers - epitomized by their lack of response to engines suddenly disintegrating in MR2 Spyders - is beyond horrendous. So what if a customer loses the better part of $10,000 in repairs? So what if the defect lurks in the engines of Spyders currently for sale on used car lots? So what if folks who have their engines rebuilt are left to wonder - and rightly so - if the defect was corrected? And so what if owners have to choose between removing the pre-cats (illegal for street use) or risking a ruined engine and exhaust system? Click the link. Read about Toyota's pre-cat problems (addressed all over the Internet), and tell me it's not a disgrace when an automaker is allowed to treat people in such a manner. What kind of car company ignores the pleas of its own product's sports car clubs? I wonder if sudden engine disintegrations didn't play into Toyota's decision to discontinue production of the MR2 Spyder. There's no excuse for any government allowing an auto manufacturer to get away with the kind of shenanigans Toyota is now notorious for pulling.

As Toyota "vigorously" defends itself against hundreds of ongoing lawsuits, this is an excellent time to "recall" an Associated Press investigation that concluded Toyota is deceptive when sued. And lotsa folks would say it's not only when they're sued. Meanwhile, just tell me one thing:

Why would anyone trust Toyota?

Update 10/3/2013 - The link regarding pre-cat removal (and the fact that it's illegal for street use) suddenly stopped working. The current link connects - at least for the time being - with a different article.