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Automaker Toyota has agreed to pay $1.1 billion to compensate victims of their sudden-acceleration malfunctions that were widely reported in 2010. The proposed settlement still must be approved, but there appears to be no reason it will not be. Details and updates can be found at

The biggest component of the settlement is for the economic loss sustained by Toyota owners whose vehicles lost value due to the sudden acceleration defects. The lack of a prompt recall resulted in numerous unnecessary additional incidents. Although there were relatively few injuries overall, at least two lawsuits have been settled in Michigan alleging serious injuries sustained by unintended acceleration. In an emotional apology, Toyota’s president expressed regret about how early reports of defects internationally were not shared with the US Department of Transportation in a timely fashion.

Toyota, despite a brief lull in business immediately following the recall, has rallied impressively. Loyal customers continue to purchase Toyota vehicles and the company does not appear to be in any financial distress. Meanwhile, the Department of Transportation continues to face criticism for being slow to act, and perhaps trying to protect automaker interests instead of consumers.

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