How Toyota responded from 2009 crisis

Toyota dealt with crisis communication in 2009 when gas pedals were accelerating with no end in sight. Four people died because of this crisis, and several other people experienced the acceleration but were able to avoid an accident. Toyota wanted to make it right, so they recalled 4 million cars due to the jammed gas pedals. Their customers’ safety was their top priority, which was displayed by them recalling 4 million vehicles. Toyota displayed They were flexible by changing their recall to include more types of cars to make sure that their customers were safe. The cause of the risk was identified, and they were willing to solve the problem by shortening the gas pedals. Therefore eliminating the damage and restoring credibility for their company.

One Toyota model that was a part of the recall.
Source: Green Car Reports

Toyota came out early with a statement saying that their company would protect the safety of its customers and the public. Crisis happens, but Toyota responded in the golden hour, which allowed the public to know where they stood. Even though not all of the facts were present, they still moved forward and spoke with the media. They do not want rumors to fly rampant and wish to have a handle on the current situation. They were able to handle the media beast by keeping them occupied and informed on the current status. Thankfully, social media was not as prevalent in 2009, so they did not have to worry about that aspect. No crisis management team is perfect, but Toyota tried their best. They could have done some things differently like not blaming all the issues on the floor mats in the vehicles, which could have sped up their investigation process.

Toyota is a large automotive manufacturer who was doing exceptionally well in the field before this recall occurred. Their comeback since this crisis has been incredible with campaigns like #wishgranted, which shows that a company can come back from a crisis.


2 thoughts on “How Toyota responded from 2009 crisis

  1. This is a great crisis to blog about. I wasn’t aware of this situation, but it’s very interesting. I agree with how Toyota responded, but I also feel that they should’ve been able to avoid this all together. People lost their lives due to the problems of these pedals. The company has made a great comeback as you said in your blog! I feel they learned a valuable lesson too especially since the crisis affected a lot of people! Thank you for this blog!


  2. Lauren-I had never heard about this Toyota crisis before. The car I drive is actually a Toyota so this article instantly caught my attention. Despite everything however, it sounded as if Toyota did a pretty good job with handling their crisis appropriately despite their minor blaming of the car trouble being due to floor mates in the car.


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