Toyota Boss Risks Own Life By Testing Toyotas

A full day before he’s scheduled to appear before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform to answer questions about the massive recall of 8.5 million Toyotas, the car giant’s President and CEO Akio Toyoda has released the text of his prepared statement. And amid all the “Sorry about that, but we’re workin’ on it,” stuff you’d expect, comes an interesting bit of tid — Toyoda claims that he does some of the testing himself.

Toward the end of the three-page statement comes this:

I myself am a trained test driver. As a professional, I am able to check on problems in a car, and can understand how severe the safety concern is in a car. I drove the vehicles in the accelerator pedal recall as well as the Prius, comparing the vehicles before and after the remedy in various environmental settings. I believe that only by examining the problems on-site, can one make decisions from the customer perspective. One cannot rely on reports or data in a meeting room.

Is anyone else reminded of The Simpsons episode where nuclear power plant owner Mr. Burns is forced to dine on Blinky, the 3-eyed, irradiated fish?