Fallout from Toyota’s accelerator pedal disaster is already slamming Toyota’s financials.
Tatsu Yoshide, a UBS auto analyst in Tokyo believes that lost sales are currently running at $155 million per week. In addition, the recall of 4.5 million vehicles globally could cost another $900 million.
Even if they end up averaging $100 million a week of lost sales for two years, it would still amount to a $10.4 billion gouge before considering the recall and new manufacturing expenses needed to overhaul their production processes. For example, they’re adding a new feature that cuts off the accelerator pedal if the brakes are pressed simultaneously. That has to cost something to implement quickly.
What’s sad is that this could have all been avoided, including alleged injuries, by the addition of a piece of metal no larger than a postage stamp:
Toyota apologized to its customers Monday and said a piece of steel about the size of a postage stamp will fix the gas pedal problem. Repairs will take about a half-hour and will start in a matter of days, the company said.
Meanwhile, Dennis Dukes of Stony Point, N.C., and his wife, said they wouldn’t drive their 2010 Camry again, even with the repair. His wife ran into the back of a truck in August in their first Camry, a crash Dukes said happened after she hit the brakes and the car kept going.
“I am absolutely not going to drive that vehicle again,” Dukes said. “Whether it fixes the Camry or not, the damage has been done. It is not going to fix things mentally for us.”
One wonders how many years of future sales have been reduced given emotions such as the above. Would you drive a Toyota now if given the choice between it and a different, similarly priced vehicle?
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