Toyota reassures fleets over recall
Mark Roden said the firm had set itself a target to complete work on the 30,000 fleet cars affected and had put in place a number of measures to speed the process up, including visiting fleets and undertaking the work on the premises.
Mr Roden said it had been an ‘impressive mobilisation of workforce’, with 35 trainers having trained 1,100 technicians in 48 hours.
With 187,000 cars in total affected in the UK, Toyota is currently operating at 1,500 modifications daily, but Roden said the aim was to hit 6,000 a day as dealers get up to speed and customers react to recall letters.
He added: ‘From a fleet perspective, we have been in contact with all our fleet and contract hire customers to reassure them about the issue. In total, around 30,000 cars are affected.
‘With some fleets we have been able to set up regionalised centres so a number of cars can be done in one go. For other fleets with vehicles spread further apart around the country it’s still easier to have the work done in dealers.
‘The fleet industry has been really supportive so far. Fleet managers and leasing companies are used to dealing with recalls so they understand the situations and the issues perhaps better than private customers.’
Mr Roden said he understood that the massive amount of global publicity could have an impact of people’s perception of Toyota’s reliability record, but thought that fleets, with their more analytical approach to a brand’s performance, were still convinced of Toyota’s build quality.
‘We’d be naïve if we didn’t think this could change perceptions, but we are confident of the product. All the fleet customers we have spoken to seem pretty happy about the whole thing, and our reliability record and we’re not seeing any customers questioning having Toyota on their fleets.’