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Toyota weather the media storm

CAP has paid particular attention to Toyota product this month, following the media frenzy over the brake and accelerator recalls. 

After extensive interrogation of its data we have seen no weakening in this brand as far as values go and in fact this month will see some strengthening of some models reflected in Black Book. 

With a very loyal customer base in the UK we did not really expect the British car buyer to have a knee-jerk reaction, but given the level of negative publicity it is clearly an issue which requires monitoring.

Wholesale transaction data compiled by CAP revealed sold volumes in January this year (the latest available at the time of writing) to be 9.2% below last January’s figure. 

This came as no real surprise as last year was unique in the level of de-stocking that took place at the end of the 2008 downturn. 

In contrast, this year dealers went into 2010 with as much stock as possible to try and pre-empt any sharp increases in prices at the turn of the year. 

We expect to see a modest increase in supply, but nothing to alter the balance of the market in comparison to demand.

Toyota recalls - your view

The latest AM-online poll sought views on Toyota’s recall problems which gained unprecedented attention from the mainstream media.

The worst of the bad press appears to be over for the Japanese brand, allowing it and its dealer network to focus on supporting the customers the recall has affected.

Opinions on how the recall has affected the brand have been split, with many dealers (not just those in the Toyota franchise network) believing the story was blown out of all proportion in the UK, while some believe the damage will be lasting.

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Has the Toyota recall done lasting damage to the sales potential of the brand in the UK?

Yes 34%                    No 66%
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Comments from the poll:

'They were already on a downward trend because of prices.'

'I think the business has handled the communication to it’s drivers extremely well, with honesty and clarity to support the integrity of the Toyota brand.'

'If recalls are done quickly Toyota will recover.'

'Toyota has met this challenge head on and only added to the integrity of the company.'

'Today its Toyota, tomorrow its another brand. It just so happens Toyota is at the top of the news agenda for now.'

'I think the public are smarter than the press give them credit for.'

'I admire the fact it is stepping up and taking ownership of them. Toyota is behaving as a responsible company.'

'It will depend on how the dealer network handles the repairs. Get it right and it will be forgotten in six months. Get it wrong and it will me remembered and spoken about for years to come.'

'Toyota should have consulted with its dealers far earlier so that an appropriate and common response was available. That said, the scale of this issue has been totally fuelled by hysterical and misguided press. Toyota should not be taking the beating.'

'We don’t have the full facts regarding the recalls as we are not part of the Toyota network. It has been taken up by the press with indecent glee and a large portion of schadenfreude from the fraternity of manufacturers who have less than perfect build quality and many years of vilification from the nice people at JD Power.'

'It looks like Toyota has handled this very badly, it goes to show no-one is immune to recalls.'

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