Another blow to the sagging reputation management efforts of Toyota is the latest recall of the Lexus LS Sedans for steering problems. The models affected are the 2010 LS 460, LS 460 L, LS 600h, and the LS 600h and represent about 11,000 cars worldwide. The Lexus ls 600 costs over $100,000 US! The problem seems to be both hardware and software.

This is the second recall of the Lexus line in two months. One month ago, Lexus stopped selling their GX 460 SUV due to stabilization problems discovered by consumer reports. The stabilization problem has a fix (and a recall).

Less than a month ago, Toyota also recalled the Sienna Minivans from 1998 to 2010 for spare tire cables that could rust and snap.

And earlier this month, the US National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration announced it was investigating Toyota for dragging its feet relative to a recall needed for Toyota pickups, T100s, and 4Runner SUVs built between 1989 and 1998.

One has to wonder what the morale of the Toyota employees and their dealers. How can they be proud of the company they represent? With every new announcement, the company has to focus on determining the issues, creating the repair needed, getting parts and programs out to their dealerships and training the dealer locations. In addition, affected customers need to be contacted. This has to be an enormous workload.

There is an old saying that ‘Quality is free’. When you do it right the first time, it is far cheaper than having to repair the problem in the field . The Toyota recall examples highlight the cost of poor quality.

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Adele Berenstein

Adele Berenstein is an Experienced Customer Satisfaction Executive, recently retired from a Large Global IT Organization after a long productive management career including Sales, Marketing, Services, teaching and education center management and most recently, 19 years in customer satisfaction management. She turned around divisions with customer satisfaction problems, implemented measurable improvements and management systems, and implemented programs to prevent problems from ever affecting customers.

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