I think they are screwed for a while. Look what the accelerator pedal incident did for Audi. It ruined them for the American market for most of the late 80’s and created the new shift lock transmission regulations that cost manufacturers more money. Side note, I actually happen to love the shift lock as I watch my daughter play in our cars and try to move out like her papa.
But the point here is that no matter how much ad money Toyota throws at this problem, people are going to freak out, not feel safe, think they can get free lawsuit cash, etc. This may be the biggest break for the Americans during these incredibly hard times. U-S-A, U-S-A! Let’s hope they don’t blow this opportunity like they do most.