Toyota is scheduled to launch its hybrid car model Prius in India in March-end or the beginning of April.
It would have certainly been a great news for the car connoisseurs of India. However, there is an unfortunate factor that forces (or should force) everybody to wonder whether the launch of Prius should be welcomed at all.
The problem is, while on one hand Toyota is going to launch the said car model in India, at the same time it is recalling the same model from the markets of other parts of the world. Reason? A faulty brake system.
Now the question that naturally comes in mind is that if Toyota feels Prius to be misfit for a launch in other countries, then how can it go ahead with the plan of launching it in India? Shouldn’t it have launched the car in India only after rectifying the faults, something that it is going to do elsewhere? How can the Toyota management present the Indian car market with a faulty car model which it does not dare to launch elsewhere? Isn’t it a case of taking the Indian car consumers for granted?
And it must also be remembered that the fault in question is not an insignificant one. Using a car model with a faulty brake means fiddling with human life, wherein the driver puts both his own life as well as the lives of other people in the road at stake. So it means that for Toyota the issue of financial profit and loss is more important than the lives of its customers.
Actually the bookings for Prius already started in January this year. Now recalling the model will mean losing all those orders, which will be a huge loss for the global car major. It is certainly true that such a huge loss is a nightmare that any organization will try to avoid. But while an organization has 100% right to take steps to avoid financial loss, can it do the same at the cost of “life security” of its customers?
Such a blatant act of irresponsibility was certainly not expected from Toyota.