Runaway Prius Driver's Account 'Inconsistent': Toyota
James Skies' car was operating properly, automaker says
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 15, 2010 3:52 PM CDT
James Sikes, who says his Toyota Prius sped out of control. at a news conference at Toyota of El Cajon in El Cajon, Calif., March 9, 2010.   (Denis Poroy)
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(Newser) – Toyota is casting doubt on a California man's claim that his Prius sped out of control, saying the report is inconsistent with the findings of the company's preliminary investigation. The automaker said today the accelerator pedal was tested and found to be working normally and a backup safety system worked properly. Toyota said the front brakes showed severe wear and damage from overheating, but the rear brakes and parking brake were in good condition.

James Sikes said his car raced to 94 mph on a freeway near San Diego last Monday. He stopped the car with help from a California Highway Patrol officer. "While a final report is not yet complete, there are strong indications that the driver's account of the event is inconsistent with the findings of the preliminary analysis," the statement said. Earlier, federal regulators said they were reviewing data but had not found anything to explain the out-of-control acceleration Sikes reported.