Speeding Prius claim questioned

Troubled car manufacturer Toyota has cast doubt upon a man's allegation that a faulty accelerator pedal caused his Prius to speed out of control.

James Sikes said his car raced to 94mph on a motorway near San Diego, US, last week. The incident on March 8 ended when Sikes stopped the car with the help of a California Highway Patrol officer.

But Toyota now claims that Mr Sikes' report is inconsistent with the findings of its preliminary investigation. The car maker said the accelerator pedal was tested and found to be working normally, as was a backup safety system. It added that the front brakes showed severe wear and damage from overheating but the rear brakes and handbrake were in good condition.

Federal regulators had earlier said they were reviewing data from the incident but had so far found nothing to explain the alleged fault.

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