Honda has announced a recall of 646,000 Honda Fit and Honda Jazz cars, including 140,000 Honda Fit cars in the United States. The recall is because of a faulty window switch that poses a fire hazard. Last year a child died after the faulty window switch caused a fire in the car.
The Honda recall comes on the heels of two major Toyota recalls due to an accelerator problem, and the recalls have Japanese automakers and investors worried.
Japanese automobiles have gained a reputation for their reliability and safety, but this reputation is now being scrutinized. On the positive side for U.S. business, more consumers are returning to American made automobiles.
“The race to cost cuts and the competition between all brands is so fierce that even the mighty Japanese are doing things that are not as reliable as they were,” said IHS Global Insight analyst Carlos Da Silva.
Honda was poised to benefit from the Toyota recall, but now Honda may see declining sales as well as it is grouped with Toyota. Toyota, by the way, is the world’s leading auto manufacturer. But the leading manufacturer has suspended sales and production in the U.S. Officials in Japan are worried that the recalls may cause all businesses in Japan to suffer.
Transportation secretary Ray LaHood recently said that all Toyota owners should stop driving their vehicles – then he quickly recanted his statement.
“What I meant to say or what I thought I said was, if you own one of these cars or if you’re in doubt, take it to the dealer and they’re going to fix it,” said LaHood.
There has been a great deal of consumer confusion over the two Toyota recalls. The most recent Toyota recall involves 2.3 million U.S. vehicles including the 2009-10 RAV4 crossovers, 2009-10 Corollas, 2009-10 Matrix hatchbacks, 2005-10 Avalons, 2007-10 Camrys, 2010 Highlander crossovers, 2007-10 Tundra pickups and 2008-10 Sequoia SUVs. The Toyota recall also extends to Europe and China. The total number of recalled Toyotas is at about 4.5 million. It could grow to include 8 million vehicles.
U.S. Congress has taken surprising steps in scrutinizing Toyota over the recall. House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman said, “Like many consumers, I am concerned by the seriousness and scope of Toyota’s recent recall announcements.”
Meanwhile, investors and citizens in Japan are worried that these recalls may negatively affect their nation’s economy.
“Toyota has a very close tie with its hand-picked suppliers. It’s like a parent in a big family, and the children actually depend on Toyota for a living,” said Kevin Chen of Gasgoo.com. “If Toyota gets the flu, its suppliers will also be sneezing.”
If you or a loved one have been injured by a recalled or defective product, contact a Georgia personal injury lawyer immediately. You may be entitled to compensation. Call MLN Law at 404-531-9700 to schedule a free consultation.