BS Alert! Runaway Prius Owner Claims His Prius Was Recalled But Turned Away By Dealer; Fact: Prius Recall Hasn't Started Yet

Paul Niedermeyer
by Paul Niedermeyer
bs alert runaway prius owner claims his prius was recalled but turned away by

Among the many unanswered questions as to what Prius owner James Sikes actually did or didn’t do to try to bring his runaway car to a stop, one claim of his definitely smells. He says he received a recall letter from Toyota, and when he took it in to the dealer, he was told his car was not on the recall lists. Ouch!

According to a story by Reuters, “Sikes said he had received a recall notice to take his car into a Toyota dealership; but when he did, he was told that his car was not on recall lists, he told reporters.” Only one big little problem with that: the recall for his particular Prius hasn’t actually started yet.

Toyota Safety Recall 90L covers every gen2 Prius MY 2004-2009 (Sikes Prius is a 2008). This recall is for the mat entrapment issue, and involves the cutting and trimming of the pedal to eliminate possible interference with floor mats. But current Toyota documents and a confirmation from my local Toyota dealership shows the starting date for the Prius as “TBD”.

Since eight million cars are involved, it appears that the sticky CTS pedal recall (Recall A0A) and all Camrys (regardless of which pedal) are the first in line. And it would only create confusion to send out letters to come to the dealership when they aren’t prepared to do the work.

Either Sikes went to the dealer for other reasons, in which case they were correct to turn him away. Or he’s making it up.

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  • Ricky Spanish Ricky Spanish on Mar 11, 2010

    Do more research into Sikes. SAN DIEGO -- As Toyota and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration investigate Jim Sikes' Prius, 10News looked into the obstacles Sikes may face going forward. Sikes made the TV network rounds following his ordeal with his runaway Prius on Monday. In the meantime, the California Highway Patrol said they would leave the credibility of his story to federal investigators. 10News uncovered files from Sikes' 2008 Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and criminologist Suzanne Goodney Lea said anyone who reports problems with Toyotas is likely to come under additional scrutiny. "Seems like an easy way to cash in and make a lot of money," said Lea. While no on is claiming Sikes wants to cash in, experts said he may face questions because of his financial situation. According to his bankruptcy records, he had a $700,000 debt. Additionally, his debts included two homes he was upside down to the tune of $240,000. He had credit card debt to deal with, including $12,000 owed to Bank of America, $38,000 owed to Citibank and $15,000 owed to Discover. Cntd. This is interesting too:

    • CarPerson CarPerson on Mar 11, 2010

      Jimmy and his buddies may have thought this was a great gag to play on Toyota. He may have a different view if Toyota comes around looking for a contribution to help pay for the $2B people are claiming the UA issus is costing them. He may find himself upside down in more than just his houses, like the barrel he may may end up wearing.

  • Boyphenom666 Boyphenom666 on Mar 11, 2010

    If I ever get in trouble, remind me never to never ask for a jury. The guy is in the REAL ESTATE business. In case you haven't heard, lots of builders, developers, property owners and banks are having problems because of the downturn in REAL ESTATE business. Duh!

  • Bocaguy99 Bocaguy99 on Mar 12, 2010

    I have a 2007 Prius that I love. On Monday, the car started to 'jump/surge' forward a few feet when I brake. I removed the mat, etc. I brought the car to the dealer and got the same story. The service writer confirmed it. The service writer told me I shouldn't drive the car until after the recall. He then realized the recall wasn't out yet and then told me it was OK to drive. For the Prius, there is also a software update he told me. The guy in CA, I think, did not know how to put his car in Neutral. You have to hold the stick for a few seconds for the Prius to go to Neutral....

  • K.T. Keller K.T. Keller on Mar 13, 2010

    Back in the '80's Toyota used to have a tag line on all of their TV commercials; "YOU ASKED FOR IT, YOU GOT IT, TOYOTA"! I guess it works both ways! Their stumbling and bumbling around on the runaway acceleration problem with their stupid carpeting response and their lack of candor has now brought on all of the crooks and liars looking for $$$. So, it would seem that they asked for it and got it, TOYOTA!