For decades the Toyota brand has been associated with quality, efficiency and good value, but the latest recall of millions of vehicles over safety concerns has affected its sales and reputation.

And now the car manufacturer is investigating safety issues in its flagship models - the latest Prius and Lexus hybrid cars. This move could cost Toyota some $2bn and further undermine confidence in what was once the symbol of Japanese reliability.

What led to this situation? Is safety being compromised for technological innovation? Will Toyota ever be able to restore public trust and has the drive for profit overwhelmed concerns about safety?

This episode of Inside Story aired on February 7, 2010.

Source: Al Jazeera