The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) National Research Council will release today its independent review entitled “The Safety Promise and Challenges of Automotive Electronics: Insights from Unintended Acceleration.” The comprehensive 162-page report was commissioned by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to explore the broad issue of claims of unintended acceleration (“UA”) and their aftermath.
The report was prompted by UA claims specific to Toyota but was commissioned to address the industry as a whole. In the report, the NAS noted that the NHTSA decided to close its investigation of Toyota’s Electronic Throttle Control System without finding evidence implicating the Electronic Throttle Control System as a cause of UA.
The NAS found that NHTSA’s decision to close the investigation was justified on the basis of NHTSA’s own investigative work, its analyses of thousands of consumer complaints, its in-depth examination of Event Data Recorders in complaint vehicles and on the basis of NASA’s independent examination of Toyota’s Electronic Throttle Control System. The NAS also made recommendations about ways in which the NHTSA and the automobile industry can work to assure the safety of electronic vehicle control functions.
Toyota appreciates the NAS for its valuable work on vehicle electronics and the open process the NAS has maintained throughout its investigation. We share the goal of NAS and NHTSA to make America’s vehicles even safer, and we will continue to work collaboratively and constructively with regulators and lawmakers to help achieve the greatest possible benefits from the Academy’s valuable work.