Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) announced details of a number of quality-related matters at a press conference in Tokyo today.
– Chief quality officers to be appointed worldwide
– New Special Committee for Global Quality
– Stronger framework for receiving and monitoring customer feedback
– Rigorous and independent testing of electronic throttle fail-safe system
– Brake-override system to be introduced on all future models
– Toyota to make active use of on-board data recorders to gather information
Measures for improving product quality
Toyota is to appoint a new chief quality officer for each principal geographical region to help make the company more alert to customer concerns. These officers will sit on a newly established Special Committee for Global Quality. This committee, headed by TMC President Akio Toyoda, will move the company’s quality improvement activities to a new, higher level. It will meet for the first time on 30 March and Toyota will consult independent, third-party experts to review the contents of that meeting.
In a separate move, Toyota is strengthening its framework for reporting customer feedback from each region directly to its Quality Group and Product Development Group, so that that information received can be translated more quickly into product quality improvements.
This initiative will be launched first in the USA where Toyota will expand its network of technical offices and fine-tune its information gathering capabilities. The aim is to be able to conduct on-site inspections within 24 hours of every reported incident of an equipment malfunction.
Electronic throttle control technology safety
Toyota’s electronic throttle control system incorporates overlapping failsafe features that are linked to a number of sensors. If a problem occurs, the system shifts the engine to idling, or shuts it down completely. Toyota has conducted rigorous testing under extremes of electromagnetic interference, vibration and other adverse conditions, and that testing has conclusively verified that the system cannot accidentally induce acceleration.
Toyota has also commissioned an independent, third-party research organisation to test its electronic throttle control system and it will release the findings of that testing as they become available.
Brake override system
Toyota will add a brake override system to all future models worldwide. This will cut engine power when the accelerator and brake pedals are applied at the same time.
On-board data recording
Toyota will make more active use of on-board data recorders. In the event of a malfunction, these can provide information to support technical investigations and repairs.
Toyota commitment to quality and “customer first”
Toyota, taking to heart the customer feedback it has received, reaffirms, together with its dealers, suppliers and employees worldwide, its commitment to unwavering quality in products and services, and to the spirit of “customer first”. Toyota will continue to endeavour to provide products that are safe and reassuring.