Thursday, July 29, 2010

Toyota's New Product Launch

Tokyo - At a news conference held here this morning, Toyota chairman Isuzu Toyoda announced plans for a new hybrid automobile, to be produced and sold only in the United States. Tentatively called the "Perfect Storm", the new midsize is scheduled for a quick debut for the 2012 model year. Key to the new vehicles, Toyoda emphasized, was the use of all defective parts from all Toyotas recalled from the last ten years, including sticking accelerators good for unintended speeds up to 180 kilometers an hour, brake pedals that sink to the floor due to sophisticated glitches in electronic circuitry, "intelligent" floor mats that will block the use of all pedals when the driver is most likely to use the car, and the quietest engines possible in order to startle and perhaps kill unsuspecting pedestrians. Also included are steering lock-ups occurring at high speed, courtesy of the latest recall involving hundreds of thousands of Avalon sedans.

Already hailed in automotive circles today "as getting in front of, and on top of Toyota's problems" (Car & Driver), ad agencies chimed in with accolades for "audacious, creative, and frankly, unbelievable marketing" (Frank Shuster of Shuster, Shuster, & Shuster), and "I'd kill to have penned this campaign, no pun intended" ( George Marbellus of Flamethrower Marketing). "Toyota looks prime to capitalize on its woes by building a car with all the woes included," said consumer advocate and twice failed presidential candidate Ralph Nader, adding that, "At least drivers will know that they're likely to be killed. This isn't the Corvair. I, for one, appreciate their honesty."

Pundits predict that Toyota will sell three to four million of the Perfect Storms, most likely because of the ten thousand dollar price tag of the car, zero money down, no interest charged and one hundred and twenty months to pay. But also, as psychologist Jamie Mendacio was quoted in The New York Times Online Edition, "This is a car for Type A people. They want and need high risk. Going to work in the morning should be an adventure for them. If they get there, they'll perform better. I think it's a wonderful idea."

Chairman Toyoda also announced that Toyota will ask the U.S. Government for subsidy help in order to facilitate production of the car in Tennessee and South Carolina, low cost non union states where the ratio of college educated job applicants applying for eleven dollar an hour job openings at Toyota factories is two hundred to one. When pressed for comment, Obama Administration press secretary Robert Gibbs said "Toyota's new initiative is interesting. We figure the deaths that might result from the new car is more than compensated by the thousands of new jobs that will be created by our friends at Toyota. We approve. We're hoping that Mazda and perhaps Hyundai will come forward with similar proposals. There are bad cars everywhere. Let's put them to use and put Americans back to work."

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