Toyota's hybrid system is a marvel of technology, except in one really inconvenient way.
U.S. auto regulators have decided to fine Toyota a maximum $16.375 million, having determined that the car company waited “at least four months” to recall its troubled vehicles. Toyota can contest the fine, which, although a record, amounts to a tiny fraction of the total financial impact of recalling some 8 million vehicles worldwide. (continued)
Toyota might have cause to breathe a little easier after a couple bumpy months, as last week's runaway-Prius story is looking like it could represent less of a PR disaster for the automaker than it originally appeared to be.
Amid major setbacks leading to massive recalls related to unintended acceleration, faulty brakes and other mechanical calamities, Toyota is shifting into damage control mode. On Tuesday, the Japanese carmaker's president, Akio Toyoda, made a personal apology before the U.S. Congress, admitting that his company got ahead of itself, prioritizing growth over quality control.
The brakes on the 2010 Toyota Prius have prompted a U.S. government investigation and a possible third recall for the troubled automaker, if a report in Japan's biggest business newspaper is to be believed. (continued)
GM claims its new wonder car, the Volt, gets mileage that makes the Prius look as if it belongs in the cash-for-clunkers program -- 230 MPG in the city. Pick up your jaw, the rating is based on a new EPA methodology and hasn't been confirmed by the agency. The car may also be delayed indefinitely in reaching the market.