Every car sold in America, and perhaps the rest of the world, is broken or dangerous to drive so it seems. Toyota (TM) has recalled more than eight million cars. Ford (F) says there are software issues with brakes on some of its new autos. Nissan recalled 540,000 vehicles because of brake pins. Now Honda (HMC), a company which has a reputation for quality second only to Toyota’s, has recalled 410,000 cars.
The multinational car firms apparently all decided to look at their brakes and accelerators after the Toyota recalls and its appears that they found defects that did not show up on earlier safety and quality inspections. Perhaps the auto corporations did not look hard enough or perhaps they did not think the mechanical troubles were important enough to worth mentioning.
Car companies are almost certainly worried that regulators, chastened by the number of defects they failed to check, will be extremely aggressive about finding trouble in the future. That will put tough pressure on the auto firms to find defects early and report them quickly.
Toyota’s competition may allow the largest car company in the world to dodge a bullet. Its huge recalls made it look like it was the only firm in the industry to overlook important defects. Now that almost every car company is finding defects in its products, the Toyota trouble seems nearly commonplace. The consumer, who is beginning to believe that all new vehicles are faulty, may not buy new cars at all, or they may decide to give Toyota a break. That break is being aided by the Japanese car company’s aggressive discounts meant to bring buyers back into show rooms.