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NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

Congress: Where's Toyota's remorse?

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Congress: Where's Toyota's remorse?

CEO testifies before panel on mass recalls

BY JUSTIN HYDE

FREE PRESS WASHINGTON STAFF

WASHINGTON -- Akio Toyoda spent much of more than three hours before a U.S. House committee investigating the company his grandfather founded, apologizing for Toyota's past and vowing he would make changes to win back his customers' trust.

His testimony -- much of it translated from Japanese -- and that of Toyota's top U.S. executive, Yoshimi Inaba, did not explain why the company took years to address thousands of sudden acceleration complaints.

"I am not satisfied with your testimony," said Rep. Marcy Kaptur, D-Ohio. "I do not feel it reflects sufficient remorse for those who have died, and I do not think you have accurately reflected the large number of complaints that have been filed for more than a decade."

Toyoda, who became the company's CEO and president last summer, said: "I feel deeply sorry for those people who lost their lives or were injured."

Toyoda defended recalls of more than 8 million vehicles for mechanical problems linked to sudden acceleration, saying he's "absolutely confident there is no problem with design" of the electronic throttle controls.

U.S. Rep. Edolphus Towns, D-N.Y., said questions remain and another hearing is likely.

Toyota execs' long apology doesn't mollify anger in Congress

Akio Toyoda's statement taking "full responsibility" for the company's recent quality troubles did not satisfy several members of the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday.

"Where is the remorse?" asked Rep. Marcy Kaptur, D-Ohio.

Waving a copy of "The Toyota Way," the seminal book about the company's culture, Kaptur questioned how Toyota's focus on quality squared with evidence the company had ignored thousands of sudden-acceleration complaints for years.

"Do you know how many people died in Japan because of what your company did?" Kaptur asked.

Toyoda, the company CEO and president, and Yoshimi Inaba, Toyota's top U.S. executive, expressed several apologies and touted the company's new system of tracking defects and trouble reports.

"We have deeply reflected on what has happened so far," Toyoda said. "We have learned a very important lesson."

link:

http://www.freep.com/article/20100225/BUSINESS0104/2250574/1331/business01/Toyodas-long-apology-for-recalls-doesnt-mollify-anger-in-Congress

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Toyoda's testimony equals up to a big round piece of candy-coated corporate bull$h!. You can let it initially deceive you, but you can still smell it through the crunchy shell.

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