Toyota to increase transparent disclosure

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 25, 2010

Toyota Motor Corp. is coming up with new guidelines that will support how it will disclose problems with its cars in such a way as to raise transparency. The carmaker also wants to rebut those who say the company is slow in reacting to problems but quick to hide them. With this new level of disclosure, Toyota will be revealing problems that it legally isn't obligated to report.

Also included here are problems that fall below the recall threshold. Toyota is still in the process of working out details of this new disclosure policy.

A Toyota spokesman revealed that these guidelines were arrived at after the confusion that arose from the recall of the Toyota Prius hybrid to fix a software glitch in its antilock braking system.

Toyota said that it started getting complaints late last year about the brakes in the Prius momentary slipping. It then conducted an on-the-fly software fix in new cars coming off the assembly line since late last month.

However, the carmaker failed to notify customers who bought the Prius prior to the fix. Toyota reasoned that it's because the braking performance, even in cars with the older software, still fell within legal guidelines.

Understandably, a public outcry followed. Toyota then decided to recall cars already sold to retrofit them with the upgraded software. Meanwhile, Toyota has yet to confirm when President Akio Toyoda will visit the United States. There is speculation though that it will happen in early March.

Topics: toyota

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