Toyota in Trouble Again ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Toyota in Trouble Again

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Toyota in Trouble Again

This just isn't Toyota's month. First the brouhaha over their joining together with the other automotive companies to oppose stricter CAFE Standards, and now they are off the list with Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports practice has been to recommend all Toyota vehicles, no matter the model. But with two vehicles, the Camry 6-cylinder (not the hybrid) and the four-wheel drive V-8 Tundra, getting below average rankings, Consumer Reports will no longer be recommending Toyota.

Toyota quickly put out a press release pointing out

led the industry with the greatest number of models, 17, ranked "Most Reliable" in this year's Consumer Reports Reliability Survey. With dozens of models from three dozen makes vying for a spot on the magazine's "Most Reliable" list, only 39 were chosen. Toyota, Lexus and Scion models accounted for 44 percent of the list."
Which is all well and good, but it's still a downturn for them.

At the Toyota Open Road Blog, Toyota was more realistic about what the new report means for them.
Not the kind of glowing remarks we're used to seeing in this unassailable publication.

In the overall rankings, Toyota slipped from first to fifth place, while Scion finished third and Lexus sixth among all automakers, with the Camry V6, Tundra 4x4 and Lexus GS AWD not being recommended.

...

we aren’t happy with the results and will re-double our efforts to strengthen our quality and reliability--to Kaizen. After all, these two issues are of the utmost importance to consumers and the hallmark of our brands.
What this means for their hybrid production is: not much. Despite other Toyota models slipping some, hybrids are still getting very high satisfaction and reliability reports from all over.

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4 comments:

Katherine said...

I am surprised to hear that the Camry and Lexus received a shun this year from Consumer Reports. This comes after just reading an article earlier in the month from US News & World Report that did 'research' into what people were really saying about vehicle companies and which cars you should go with. Camry was #1 in mid-sized sedans while Lexus and Tundra were ranked high too.

I think I am going to discourage people from Toyota for the moment. The bad press is really adding up. Worldwide, Toyota has worked to cultivate a "green" reputation but Toyota isn't acting green in Washington, DC where its lobbyists are trying to weaken, delay, or eliminate a bipartisan Senate measure to achieve greater fuel efficiency in the U.S.


Check out www.energybill2007.org. to learn more.

Mike said...

It's just the one version of the Camry that is getting the downgrade. The hybrid, for instance, is still getting rave reviews especially on reliability.

Toyota, as a car company, is still getting very high marks from Consumer Reports. They just aren't getting a free pass.

I find it strange that so many are focusing in on Toyota, while they are only part of the organization that is fighting the new CAFE standards. They are not the only car company involved in the Auto Alliance.

Katherine said...

You are so right Mike. There are many car companies that do deserve more critisizm. In my defense, I feel that Toyota has the most recognizable hybrid on the market with the Prius. And advertisers/media have done a good job of promoting Toyota has a environmental-conscious company and they go along with it. Doesn't hurt their image not to.

Toyota/Automobile companies should have all their models meet the standards proposed in www.energybill2007.org. What are your additional thoughts?

Mike said...

I agree with you. I don't think the measures being proposed are out of reach for the car companies. I just don't agree with singling out Toyota.

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