Lawsuit Against Toyota for Defective Breaks May Go Forward

A Texas federal judge recently denied Toyota Motor Corporation’s motion to dismiss a class action lawsuit filed in the Eastern District of Texas against Toyota Motor Corporation and other related Toyota entities (“Toyota”).

In the lawsuit, plaintiffs allege that certain 2010-2015 Toyota Prius, 2012-2014 Toyota Camry Hybrid, and 2013-2105 Avalon Hybrid models “contain a significant defect in their braking systems” that causes the brakes to underperform and sometimes fail entirely, resulting in hazardous conditions and dangerous collisions. The lawsuit was filed by four named plaintiffs in their individual capacity, but also as proposed representatives of other similarly situated owners of these vehicles, which makes lawsuit a class action, subject to certification of the proposed plaintiff classes by the court.

According to the lawsuit, Toyota first began investigating the defect—which is in the brake booster pump assembly—in May 2010, but it has only offered a very limited recall for cars presently experiencing a hazardous malfunction. The plaintiffs seek injunctive and/or declaratory relief requiring Toyota to repair, recall, and/or replace the vehicles, in addition to statutory penalties, punitive damages, and repayment of money spent by any class member to make the necessary repairs.

Toyota Motor Corporation filed a motion to dismiss, in response to the lawsuit, arguing that plaintiffs’ warranty, fraud, unjust enrichment, and other claims were not sufficiently pled, and that plaintiffs’ claims should be barred based on other legal doctrines. Plaintiffs’ filed a lengthy response explaining why their claims were proper, and both sides filed additional briefing with court. The court also held a hearing on the motion.

After considering the allegations in plaintiffs’ complaint, the briefing on the motion to dismiss, and the parties’ arguments at the hearing, the court issued a short opinion denying Toyota’s motion. Specifically, the court held that the plaintiffs alleged sufficient facts to properly state claims for relief under the liability theories that plaintiffs asserted against Toyota. With Toyota’s motion to dismiss having been denied, the lawsuit will proceed with the plaintiffs asking the court to certify the proposed classes.

The attorneys at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner have been fighting for the rights of people who have been injured by defectively designed and manufactured products for decades. If you or someone you know has been injured by a defective product, contact the experienced attorneys at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner at 713-396-3964 or toll free at 1-800-594-4884.