Senior Japanese auto industry executives are watching the frenzy surrounding the recall of millions of Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles closely amid fears it could escalate into a political battle between the United States and Japan.
“I hope it’s not going to be a U.S. versus Japan kind of political issue,” Takashi Yamanouchi, chief executive officer of Mazda Motor Corp., said in an interview yesterday at the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto.
There is heavy criticism of Toyota in the United States, said Mr. Yamanouchi, who noted that “cars are still machines, so because they still are machines they cannot be 100 per cent perfect.” Mazda is Japan’s fifth-largest auto maker. Toyota is the largest.
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