Toyota either has, or is about to learn, that the problem with going to desperate measures to conceal design defects with your product lines is that you can go too far, and then get caught in your own web of lies. As noted in a New York Times editorial that was published this past Friday, Toyota's claim that the federal safety agency had found no defects with their cars where the floor mat was compatible with the vehicle and properly secured was patently false.
Now, Toyota has essentially been forced to issue a product recall of over 4 million vehicles, roughly 3 times the number of vehicles it sold in North America in the past year. And, looking forward, I imagine this is only a small part of Toyota's problem, because I don't see how anyone in their right mind would trust a representation from either Toyota or the government (which, in fact, did look the other way on some of these problems until they mushroomed) that these defective designs, whether with regard to the sudden acceleration, the "sticky" gas pedals, or problematic driver-side mats had been remedied, and the cars were once again safe to be driven.
Stated differently, how can Toyota convince anyone to buy one of their products?