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Design Hardware & Software

Embedded Expert: No Pedal Misapplication in Toyota Case

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Amclaussen
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Platinum
Was it absolutely necessary?
Amclaussen   5/20/2014 2:52:42 PM
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Agreed too, Charles.

But it still puzzles me as -Was it absolutely necessary?- (I'm referring to the use or ab-use of electronics in cars nowadays). To me, the use of electronically actuated accelerators is still a case of ab-use. A much simpler and reliable Bowden cable throttle is more than enough to perform reliably. (Unless you consider the phanatic emissions-lowering brigade that pushed that kind of design onto present day cars, obviously. Another fine example of Eco-Illogical design, like lead-free solder, Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs and other examples where overly 'green' people have caused more harm than good in the end.

Amclaussen
User Rank
Platinum
Re: A software glitch after all
Amclaussen   5/20/2014 2:15:32 PM
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BUT... That Mustang already has big enough brakes compared to many sedans.

I would not be so sure that a common midsize sedan can be safely stopped everytime in daily driven conditions in a hurry or emergency situation.  And please consider some (many) replacement brake pads and rotors simply do not work as effectively as desired. Many present day replacement rotors simply warp badly in many cases and do not provide an effective braking system. Same for many pads. I'm talking real world reality.  Add less than perfect shop repair results and there is some place for brake overload/failure in this scenario.  A common driver that gets surprised by a lack of braking can easily overheat the brakes and crash.  Another more decided driver (maybe the Roush Mustang one) will be determined enough to properly apply FULL braking on time and result in no crash.  For me it is still an unresolved aspect. Amclaussen.

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Re : a software glitch after all
Charles Murray   12/11/2013 7:31:02 PM
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Agreed, AnandY. It's getting tougher for engineers to keep an eye on those "minor details" (especially when there are hundreds of thousands of lines of code), but they have to do it.

AnandY
User Rank
Gold
Re : a software glitch after all
AnandY   11/24/2013 12:13:01 PM
We have to understand that motor vehicle design, especially high end motor vehicle design, is a complex process and its hard to keep tabs on every part of the process. In addition, most of the process is automated and a simple glitch in any could have devastating effects such as the one witnessed in the 'acceleration mishap'. This is a wakeup call to designers not so keen on the minor details.

Parris Boyd
User Rank
Gold
Re: What has been proven?
Parris Boyd   11/18/2013 12:44:23 PM
"Critic," it's time to stop trying to blame drivers for Toyota's lousy products. Time to face the fact that a jury heard expert testimony and found Toyota guilty by a "preponderance of the evidence," which is the legal terminology for the burden of proof in a civil case. The jury was obviously adamant because it went even further, stating that Toyota showed "reckless disregard" for Plaintiffs rights. Recall King Toyota has left a broad swath of destruction, featuring deaths, injuries, and at least one unjustly imprisoned Toyota driver who was finally relaesed after the facts were exposed. Talk about consumers paying a price...   

Critic
User Rank
Platinum
Re: What has been proven?
Critic   11/18/2013 11:38:01 AM
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The locked wheel proves that the brake system was at least partially functional.

The 150-foot skid mark proves that the driver had enough time to turn off the ignition and shift to neutral.  Oh, she had enough time to apply the emergency/parking brake?  Apparently she didn't know the proper procedure for stopping the car!!!

Most cars don't stop themselves- this is the driver's responsibility.  Why didn't she push harder on the service brakes???  She was too weak?  Maybe she should not have been driving.  Maybe she had already ridden the brakes, instead of stopping the car.

Maybe there was something wrong with the car, maybe there was not.  We don't know with 100% confidence.  It's wrong to take one side or the other, except in a civil lawsuit, where the burden of proof is only "more likely than not."

Unfortunately, we consumers are going to pay the price for these lawsuits, regardless of what really happened.

tekochip
User Rank
Platinum
Re: A software glitch after all
tekochip   11/12/2013 9:03:18 AM
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RTristani  you are correct and that's good information to have!  Here's a link to the article:

 

http://www.caranddriver.com/features/how-to-deal-with-unintended-acceleration

 

Even at 120MPH they were able to bring the car down to 10MPH at full throttle before the brakes started smoking.

OLD_CURMUDGEON
User Rank
Platinum
Re: MY two cents....
OLD_CURMUDGEON   11/12/2013 7:48:30 AM
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Ratsky:  Thanks for the heads up.  We have friends close by who have bought & sold HYUNDAIS for the past 10+ years like most people change their socks.  Not exactly sure why, since I never hear any negative comments.  Maybe they just like the "experience" of buying a new vehicle every year or so.

There's a local HYUNDAI dealership in this west central FLA area that inundates the area w/ mail advertising.  There isn't a week that passes that we don't receive at least one or more "SUPER SALE EVENTS of the Century", etc.  Too bad there aren't laws restricting or clamping down on boasting!  This dealership would win the Grand Prize every year.

Funny thing is that the old location of the TOYOTA dealer is almost directly across the highway from the HYUNDAI dealer.  So, you can imagine the competition!!!

To tell you the truth, I've seen a drastic change in the attitude & daily operation of the TOYOTA dealership, and from my perspective, I can't say that I'm pleased with it.  Buying a new vehicle in the coming years is going to be a scary event, I have the feeling.  And, now with the vehicles becoming almost human-like in their intelligence, that scares me even more.....

 

RTristani
User Rank
Iron
Re: A software glitch after all
RTristani   11/12/2013 7:21:01 AM
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One magazine, I think it was Car and Driver, did a test of this.  Even a supercharged Roush Mustang, traveling at freeway speed, with sudden application of brakes and throttle came to a full stop.  Their conclusion was that no ordinary car's engine, even with the car moving at freeway speed, was going to overcome its brakes.

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Re: A software glitch after all
Charles Murray   11/11/2013 6:51:58 PM
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Absolutely true, Rob. But as I'm sure you know, it was not true in 2002.

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