Monday, February 21, 2011

Why the public should repay Toyota

It doesn't take much does it? Just over a week after the NASA and NTSA reports came out absolving Toyota of any accelerator problems other than the known "sticky pedal" and floormat issue, Toyota's reputation is riding high again. Americans have changed their minds in the same way the wind changes direction and all is apparently forgiven. As I've mentioned on this blog before, the vast majority of unintended acceleration cases were down to the idiot drivers, which leads to an interesting problem. Reputation is everything and Toyota took a huge hit because of these people. Given that there never was a problem, doesn't it only seem right and fair that every driver who tagged along hoping for a claim payout, or claimed their Toyota had unintended acceleration, should now be forced to pay recompense to Toyota for wasting their time and damaging their reputation? More to the point, if they really can't tell the difference between the accelerator and the brake - two pedals that are radically different shapes and sizes and in different parts of the footwell - they really shouldn't be driving a car at all.

The worst part of all of this is that anyone who is even vaguely a petrolhead could have told you this this would be the ultimate outcome. We didn't need millions of dollars of research to tell us this. Why? Look back to 1985-86 when Audi suffered the same problem with the Audi 4000. Thousands of cases of unintended acceleration forced a massive recall and investigation that cost Audi dearly in sales and reputation. The end result? Stupid drivers who couldn't tell the difference between the accelerator and the brake.


Klaas said...

But of course there is a problem with Toyota! Same as there was with Audi! It. Is. Not. American.

Gregg said...

Your kidding right? Toyota just had yet another recall. Maybe there is no solid proof there was a problem with the sticking accelerator, but what if there was? Would you want your wife and children riding and driving in that car until they found out? Where there is smoke there is fire and Toyota got to big too fast and wanted to be number one at the sacrifice of quality. I don't think peoples minds have all changed like the wind and their sales prove it. And even that is misleading because they have thrown so many incentives to keep them selling. Toyota has been a fine vehicle, and for the most part remains a fine vehicle. They helped raise the bar for other manufactures, but they are machines and they were once considered junk when they first came to the US. I am sure they will get there eye back on the ball because there resale value has dropped which was one of the great benefits, they have had to put them into the rental car fleet which further dropped their value, and the last 2 I rented I had to return because of problems. The other thing is since they raised the bar others have jumped over it and they look better with better features, well kind of like Ford and Sync. If there was a way to have the crackpots repay Toyota for false claims, I am for that. There may not be a problem they can find with that one thing, but I am sure not going to risk my love ones testing it to make sure, are you?

Chris said...

Unfortunately that's exactly the sort of knee-jerk reaction that people always have. The latest recall is simply an expansion on the existing floormat issue, which was a design problem. Not electrical "gremlins". What I'm saying is that all those idiots who slammed their foot on the accelerator then blamed Toyota, should be forced to pay up.

As for "would I risk it?" - why yes I would. A Toyota Yaris saved my wife's life when a teenage driver in a Ford Explorer slammed into her in the middle of an intersection. She bought another Toyota with the insurance money. They're perfectly safe. Don't believe everything you read in the press.

See my blog post here for more info: A Toyota saved my wife's life.

Chris said...

Oh and if you're interested, I have photos of the Explorer too.

Mystery Girl said...

As the wife in this equation I'd like to point out that I have driven many makes of car including a Mini, a Honda civic and a Subaru but none of them has ever been in a crash. The Yaris is my first Toyota, in Europe the Toyota has a reputation as 'bombproof' and needs hardly any maintenance. The Yaris is responsive, handles well and stops when I use the brake. After the accident seeing the level of protection my little car provided I had no hesitation in buying another one. For the record I would never have a Ford because my dad has a Fiesta and it is forever breaking down.