Brake Override Technology: The New Focus of Toyota Lawsuits Business News | January 9, 2011 | By Aaron Schoenberger
Brake Override Technology - Toyota Camry Wheel

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Plaintiffs involved in lawsuits against Toyota have changed their legal strategy to focus on brake override technology — or lack thereof. This is a major turning point for the automotive manufacturer and may, just may, prove negligence on their part.

According to an article by Kristen Hall-Geisler on, “Brake override is also known as a smart pedal. In these brake systems, sensors recognize when the gas pedal and brake pedal are being pressed at the same time. They also recognize that this isn’t how people normally drive, and that something is going wrong. The car’s central computer then has a variety of ways it can slow the car down safely.”

Toyota discussed the addition of brake overrides with federal safety regulators as early as 2007, but didn’t start implementing such systems until after issues (and deaths) began to surface. The question is: Could brake override technology have eliminated the acceleration issue, or is it a small piece of a larger pie?

Toyota’s spokesman, Mike Michels, stated: “We look forward to the time when they are compelled to specify exactly what is defective, backed up by scientifically reliable proof rather than speculation.” I don’t want to take sides and defend Toyota in any way, but from a legal standpoint this makes sense. Yes, brake overrides could have prevented the issue, but are they the cause of the issue? No.

I’m looking forward to seeing how this all plays out. Toyota is stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Aaron Schoenberger
The Brainchild Group

Aaron Schoenberger is Founder of The Brainchild Group — an innovative online advertising agency that specializes in Social Media Marketing and Search Engine Optimization (SEO). He’s known for his work with celebrity clients, top restaurants, automotive manufacturers, professional athletes and Fortune 500 companies.



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