Poll: 49% Say Toyota's Hiding Something

In an undated photo provided by Toyota Motor Corp., a 2010 Toyota Corolla is seen. Japan's Toyota Motor Corp. announced late Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2010 that it would halt sales of some of its top-selling models, including the Corolla, to fix gas pedals that could stick and cause unintended acceleration. Last week, Toyota issued a recall for the same eight models affecting 2.3 million vehicles. AP

Americans are divided over how Toyota has handled the recent recall of its automobiles and their problems with braking and acceleration, with half saying they are less likely to buy a Toyota, a new CBS News Poll shows.

While Toyota owners are generally more positive than Americans overall about the company and its cars, a third of them are reluctant to buy another Toyota.

Thirty-nine percent of Americans think Toyota has done a good job so far in handling the problems with its vehicles, while 34 percent think the automaker has done a bad job.

One in four Americans does not have an opinion.

The poll does show evidence of distrust among Americans. While 27 percent think Toyota is mostly telling the truth about the problems with their automobiles, 49 percent say Toyota's management is hiding something.

As for Toyota owners, 43 percent say the company is being truthful, but the same number believe management is hiding something.

The poll shows that Toyota's sales may suffer as a result of the problems. Forty-nine percent of Americans say they are less likely to buy a Toyota right now. A third say the problems have made no difference in their likelihood to buy a Toyota and 16 percent say they are more likely to buy a Toyota.

More than four in five (81 percent) Americans think the company will be able to fix all the problems and make the cars safe to drive again.

More on Toyota at CBSNews.com:

Toyota Execs to Face U.S. Lawmakers Again
More Toyotas Need Oil Hose Fix
Toyota Woes Highlight Hi-Tech Car Pitfalls
Auto Industry Insider on Electronics Challenges
Toyota New Car Sales Up Amid Recalls
Toyota Seized after "Near Death" Claim
Toyota Accused of Hiding Design Evidence
Did Toyota Pull Strings to Stifle Probes?

In the wake of the issues with Toyota, the percentage of Americans who say U.S. automakers produce better-quality cars than foreign car makers has risen since last year. Forty-one percent now say American-made cars are better, compared to 29 percent last January, when struggling U.S. automakers received government bailouts.

(CBS)


Read the Complete Poll

This poll was conducted among a random sample of 967 adults nationwide, interviewed by telephone February 26-March 1, 2010. Phone numbers were dialed from random digit dial samples of both standard land-line and cell phones. The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample could be plus or minus three percentage points. The error for subgroups is higher. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

Total respondents: 967, Margin of error: 3 pts.
Toyota owners: 148, Margin of error: 8 pts.

  • CBSNews

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