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Toyota Chief Has Gloomy Outlook

These aren't the kinds of things you hear from many Western executives when their companies are in trouble:

— Bloomberg News — "Toyota Motor Corp., the world's biggest automaker, is 'grasping for salvation' as it predicts a second straight annual loss, President Akio Toyoda said. ...

"The automaker is one step away from 'capitulation to irrelevance or death,' Toyoda said, citing a study of how companies fail. Toyota has forecast a record loss of 450 billion yen ($5 billion) in the year ending March after the worldwide recession pummeled car demand."

The New York Times "From grief over a fatal crash linked to Toyota floor mats to regrets over the company's forecast for a second consecutive annual loss, the executive offered a litany of apologies to astonished reporters gathered for a briefing Friday at the Japan National Press Club."

— Kyodo News — "Toyoda said a 'once-in-a-century shakeup' is necessary to free the battered auto industry from oil dependence and promised to bring the company back to its roots in pursuing a customer-first policy."