Feds Close Probe Into 2006-'10 Toyota Corolla for Low-Speed Unintended Acceleration

WASHINGTON — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on Saturday closed an investigation into nearly 1.7 million 2006-'10 Toyota Corolla sedans that had originally launched after a consumer complaint about low-speed unintended acceleration.

Federal safety regulators said they could not find any problems with the throttle or transmission systems on a 2010 Corolla owned by Bob Ruginis, a Rhode Island man who made the complaint.

"The petitioner alleges incidents of low-speed surging, in which the brakes failed to stop the vehicle, causing a crash," said NHTSA in its problem description.

Ruginis petitioned the agency on September 11, 2014.

Investigators said they conducted a technical review of material cited and provided by Ruginis and tested his vehicle, along with examining material supplied by Toyota.

According to documents posted on the NHTSA Web site, investigators also looked into 163 other unwanted acceleration complaints involving Corollas as submitted by Ruginis.

But NHTSA noted that, "only 105 fit the alleged defect category as defined by the petitioner."

They found that in most cases, drivers pressed the gas pedal instead of the brake, pressed both pedals or braked too late.

"Taking into account the allocation of agency resources, agency priorities and the likelihood that an additional investigation would not result in a finding that a defect related to motor-vehicle safety exists, NHTSA has concluded that further investigation of the issues raised by the petition is not warranted," it said. "The agency accordingly has denied the petition."

Edmunds says: Owners of these cars do not need to take any action since the case is closed.

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