Car Talk

By Megan McArdle

What a PR disaster for Toyota: the company is having to recall millions of cars because four people were killed in a crash that apparently involved improperly installed floor mats.  Apparently, both the accelerator and brake pedal stopped working, a fact that was relayed via cell phone just before the crash.

This will not help Toyota's warm and fuzzy image.  What I sort of don't get is, why didn't they just shift into neutral, slam on the emergency lights, pull the parking brake, and coast to a stop?  I'm sure that this is a perfectly idiotic question, and I will immediately be set straight by the car buffs.  If so, please enlighten me.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2009/09/car-talk/27551/