Apple's Wozniak: Toyota Has Software Problem

(James Martin/CNET)
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak said Toyota's problems go beyond faulty gas pedals and involve bad software.

As first reported by CNET, Wozniak told an audience at Discovery Forum 2010 Monday:

"Toyota has this accelerator problem we've all heard about," Wozniak said. "Well, I have many models of Prius that got recalled, but I have a new model that didn't get recalled. This new model has an accelerator that goes wild, but only under certain conditions of cruise control. And I can repeat it over and over and over again--safely."

"This is software. It's not a bad accelerator pedal. It's very scary, but luckily for me, I can hit the brakes," he said.

Wozniak further addressed his concerns over faulty software in an ABC interview Tuesday:

"I tap the cruise control lever to increase the speed and it basically goes into an unlimited speed up," said Wozniak. "If I hit the brake it disables my cruise control and it goes back to normal."

"But since my foot never touches the pedal," he continued, "[the problem] cannot be a sticky accelerator pedal. … There might be some bad software in there."

Wozniak said he has been trying to contact officials at Toyota and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for months with little luck.

A Toyota spokesman said it investigates all complaints.

"We're in the business of investigating complaints, assessing problems and finding remedies," said John Hanson, national manager environmental safety and quality communications at the automaker. "After many years of exhaustive testing, we have not found any evidence of an electronic [software] problem that would have led to unwanted acceleration."

The automaker has recalled nearly 4.5 million vehicles worldwide to repair so-called "sticky gas pedals." The company announced Monday that new parts are en route to dealerships and repairs should begin as soon as possible.

Adding to Toyota's woes, there have been more than 100 complaints in the U.S. and Japan about the brakes of the Prius hybrid.

Read more about the Toyota recall at

LaHood: Toyota Resisted Safety Fix
Analyst: Recall Costs Toyota $155M a Week
Does Toyota's Problem Go Beyond Pedals?
Toyota: New Pedal Parts on Way to Dealers
Government OKs Toyota Gas Pedal Fix