A current class action against Toyota Motor Corporation Australia Limited is claiming compensation for alleged defects in several of Toyota’s top-selling vehicles including the Hilux, Fortuner and Prado vehicles.
It specifically concerns cars with the 1GD-FTV or 2GD-FTV diesel engine, which contain an allegedly faulty diesel particulate filter – or DPF – that increases fuel consumption and general wear and tear.
Today Justice Michael Lee found that the DPF system involved was defective, with the estimated cost of damages for customers who bought an affected car calculated to be $7,474.59.
This figure was reached based on a number of reasons, primarily that the value of the vehicles was reduced by 17.5 per cent for having the DPF installed.
“In short, by reason of the Core Defect, the Relevant Vehicles were worth less at the time of supply than they would have been worth if they were not defective,” Justice Lee wrote.
“The conduct in marketing the vehicles as being of acceptable quality was misleading.”
Given the class action concerns 264,170 vehicles, if every impacted owner claimed the full damages of $7,474.59 Toyota would be facing a bill just shy of $2 billion.
In a statement to 9News.com.au a spokesperson for Toyota Australia said the manufacturer was reviewing the judgement.
“We are in the process of reviewing the court’s judgment,” the spokesperson said.
“At every step, we believe that we have implemented customer focused and technically grounded remedies to resolve customers’ concerns.
“Toyota will carefully consider the initial trial judgment before making any further comment.”
The proceedings will continue.