Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5 - FMVperformance.com : The site for all your Ford Mazda and Volvo needs
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-23-2007, 10:55 PM Thread Starter
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Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5m

The lawsuit was recently settled for a reported total of approximately $4.5 million. The contributions to the settlement were about 49% from the estate of the driver, 41% from the track owners and the event organizers, 8% from Porsche, and 2% from the driver of the Ferrari that was claimed to have triggered the crash.
more details:
Sports Car Market Magazine

Original story:
Two Killed In Crash At California Speedway - News Story - KNBC | Los Angeles


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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 02:39 AM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

I normally don't comment on things like this. However, the fact that they are busting on Porsche because the driver ignored the warnings of his mechanic is complete BS.

"The sole claim against Porsche was that the Carrera was defective because it was designed without electronic stability control, which Porsche calls PSM."

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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 03:06 AM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

[quote author=(Flexion) link=topic=92594.msg1804748#msg1804748 date=1193207983]

"The sole claim against Porsche was that the Carrera was defective because it was designed without electronic stability control, which Porsche calls PSM."
[/quote]

that there, is a contradictory sentence. it was designed without PMS or whatever the traction system its called. therefore the lack of the PSM is certainly not a defect, it is a design feature. ignorance.

perhaps design flaw would have been better wording, but then where is it written that there must be traction control on a carrera gt????

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 03:29 AM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

that is such BS. im sorry to hear that 2 people died in the accident, but when attending a track day you accept the risks that come with the activity. yes, i do think that poor track design led to the accident, and that should have been corrected prior to the event. in my opinion, porsches decision to leave traction control out of the car was not a cause of the crash. it amasses me how people can always shift the blame, and get away with it.


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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 03:54 AM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

Lets sue the dead guys for not being smart enough to buy a car WITH tracking control.

End of story.

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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 08:36 AM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

[quote author=bossboy link=topic=92594.msg1804778#msg1804778 date=1193212497]
Lets sue the dead guys for not being smart enough to buy a car WITH tracking control.

End of story.

[/quote]

Traction*

So.. who got this 4.5m? I don't get it.. was it the passengers family?

The idea that they sued the drive is ok, he caused that guy to die by crashing. Indisputable.

The track shouldn't of had to pay shit as I'm sure those guys had to sign a waiver saying "If anything happens track/organizers are NOT responsible."

The idea that Porsche has a defective product because they didn't put PSM in that the CGT is laughable at best.


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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 11:28 AM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

[quote author=gru link=topic=92594.msg1804914#msg1804914 date=1193229361]
The track shouldn't of had to pay shit as I'm sure those guys had to sign a waiver saying "If anything happens track/organizers are NOT responsible."

The idea that Porsche has a defective product because they didn't put PSM in that the CGT is laughable at best.
[/quote]

while I'm inclined to agree with you in my heart, thinking about it gets me to a different conclusion.

1) the track redesigned the layout, which created an unsafe condition. It's not like they just spun off and hit a wall and died, they spun off and hit a wall that apparantly should not have been there if the track was doing it's job correctly. As mentioned in the article, releases cover negligence but not gross negligence. Without seeing all the evidence we can't make a truly informed opinion about it, but if there was any evidence that the track either didn't consider the safety ramifications of the alteration, or if they DID consider it, recognized the danger, and then decided either to not fix it or to rely on unsatisfactory methods to mitigate the risk, then i think that is gross negligence.

Look at it this way: you sign a release when you go sky diving. If your chute suffers a common malfunction or just "one of those things" and you die, then that's part of the deal. If the instructor isn't paying enough attention to you, then again, sorry, thanks for playing. You signed a release. But if the sky diving company is knowingly using defective parachutes or if they are having a unsupervised kid on his first day on the job with no experience packing the chutes, then that's over the line of negligence and becomes gross negligence. You can sign away a lot of rights with a waiver, and you certainly agree not to sue for negligence, but there is an understanding in such an agreement that the company won't knowingly do something to fuck you over.

moving a barrier on a race track and either knowing that it's unsafe or not bothering to even think about the safety are, to me, over that line.

2) you have to look at what the company reasonably should have known. They know that they have a car with shitloads of power. They know that it oversteers (as it should, dammit, it's a badass supercar). And they know that most of the cars will be bought by rich idiots with more money than brains. They KNOW this, or at least any reasonable person SHOULD know it. They also have a technology that they can use to mitigate the risks of this somewhat. Seriously: under normal LEGAL driving conditions, would you have a reason to push the car the limit of PSM kicking in and ruining the drive? Most of the time, absolutely not. In the rain or in an emergency situation, it can save your life. But on a back road or on the track? You can just push a button and turn it off.

And that's where I think Porsche failed the test. They decided not to include it, knowing that the car would be WAY over the ability of most drivers to handle safely at the limit. If you don't like it, you can always turn it off.

Do I think they still would have gotten sued if it could be turned off? Sure, but I think it would be a lot easier to convince a jury that you're not responsible if you give the driver a tool that he chooses not to use than if you decide not to give it to him at all.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 02:26 PM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

I'd agree with #1 and #2. I am guessing Porsche will possibly appeal the decision, but considering the minimal monetary impact (though possibly larger legal impact) it doesn't sound worth it for Porsche to appeal. I also fully agree the track should have addressed the location of the wall and should not have been moved to begin with (anything that presents a head on impact target along a race track is a horrible idea unless it is either a tirewall to reduce impact energy or far from the track behind a gravel/sand trap).

I would say as for the driver of the ferrari I don't think he should have been involved unless it could have been shown that he exercised gross negligence in how he pulled out of the pit. Maybe they demonstrated that in the suit, but it didn't sound like it in the story. Same goes with the driver, it didn't sound like he exhibited gross negligence. He knew the car has touchy and had a tendency to oversteer, that doesn't mean he was told there were specific mechanical defects in his vehicle and decided to drive anyway. I think at most it shows negligence in the manner of his driving or possibly even just out right bad luck and lack of skill, but I don't think it shows gross negligence on the part of the driver.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 02:38 PM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

Murph, I concede to your point made in #1. I'd say you're 100% correct there.

As for Porsche, I'm still not sure. Yes, it's reasonable to assume that these cars will be purchased by people with boat loads of money. I don't believe that it is then the car manufacturers responsibility to worry about the driving skill of the people purchasing their cars. As the CGT is produced as a street car and NOT a track car there is no fault on Porsche's side with how someone drives that particular street car on a track.

Now, hypothetically if the car DID have a PSM which defaulted to ON and was turned OFF by the driver, Porsche would not be to blame in that case either. If Porsche knew that their PSM would fail under such-and-such conditions on a track and the driver had left it turned ON, then I think Porsche could definitely be held liable.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-24-2007, 03:28 PM
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Re: Porsche Carrera GT Crash Settled for $4.5

[quote author=gru link=topic=92594.msg1805919#msg1805919 date=1193251088]
Murph, I concede to your point made in #1. I'd say you're 100% correct there.

As for Porsche, I'm still not sure. Yes, it's reasonable to assume that these cars will be purchased by people with boat loads of money. I don't believe that it is then the car manufacturers responsibility to worry about the driving skill of the people purchasing their cars. As the CGT is produced as a street car and NOT a track car there is no fault on Porsche's side with how someone drives that particular street car on a track.

Now, hypothetically if the car DID have a PSM which defaulted to ON and was turned OFF by the driver, Porsche would not be to blame in that case either. If Porsche knew that their PSM would fail under such-and-such conditions on a track and the driver had left it turned ON, then I think Porsche could definitely be held liable.
[/quote]

As I said, I agree with you in my heart.

Look at it from a cynical point of view: you make cars. You know that people will crash them by being idiots. You also know that someone will try and sue the manufacturer for any little thing. So you make a car that, realistically speaking, probably should have PSM for most of the people who will ever get behind the wheel of one. You HAVE to know that someone will lose control, crash, and then sue your ass.

As far as it being a street car driven on the track, you would think that would make a difference. Look at it from the viewpoint of a juror who knows nothing about cars: the slick attorney says that Porsche has a technology that would prevent this but didn't use it....thank god it happened on a race track and it wasn't on a wet road in your neighborhood, where you drive with your kids in the car!

They seem to have assigned fault to Porsche because of the following: the car oversteered a lot in testing and they knew it, they had a technology to fix it and they didn't. The oversteer was a direct result of the car design, they should have foreseen such accidents.

My question: if car manufacturers are able to be held liable for on-track incidents, when will they be forced to stop voiding the warranties of people who track their cars?
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