CEO says Americans should worry more about "faulty brake in willpower department."
N THE WAKE of millions of Toyota recalls and continued concerns about the safety of its automobiles, CEO Akio Toyoda has embarked on a campaign he hopes will redirect fears away from Toyota and toward America's well-known battle of the bulge.
"Americans drop like fly," said Mr. Toyoda on a recent conference call. "Time for Americans to eat less, drive more Toyotas. Our cars safe as cuddly bear. Little brake problem, hardly notice. But tire hanging over belt, heart attack waiting to happen. Fat Americans shouldn't throw stone."
During the video conference, Mr. Toyoda unveiled a series of graphics demonstrating the dominance of weight as a leading cause of American deaths as compared to fatalities in Toyota vehicles. A bright pink bar bleeding off the edge of the display indicated weight-related deaths, whereas a thin green line represented all reported deaths attributed to faulty brake systems in Toyotas.
"No comparison," stated Mr. Toyoda. "Green so small, it's only line, not even bar. Pink is huge bar! Huge like fatso at all-you-can-eat buffet. Stop eating like pig."
Indeed, the next graphic illustrated on the left a round pink pig attempting unsuccessfully to squeeze into a shiny new Toyota sedan. On the right, the pig lay belly up next to the Toyota, with x's in place of its eyes.
"Universal sign for 'dead pig,'" Mr. Toyoda explained. "Toyota sedan perfectly safe. Lesson for America: Don't eat all the fatty food, or you get round like pig and die in driveway. More heart attack waiting to happen."
Mr. Toyoda ended his call by appealing to Americans to place much more attention on their "faulty break in willpower department," than on the brake systems of Toyota's fleet of cars, minivans, and SUVs.
"Everything under control in Toyota assembly line," insisted the CEO. "But in America eating is out of control. We can't help you with safest car in universe if you eat like no tomorrow."
© 3.1.10 Kate Heidel