The introduction of the 2012 Civic produced an uproar. Worried about tightening consumer budgets after the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008, Honda ( delayed Civic's introduction so it could slash its piece costs by substituting less expensive materials for the car's interior. To make things worse, exterior changes were barely discernible. Instead of waiting three years to do a makeover, Honda rushed one in 18 months for the 2013 model year (seen above), upgrading interior materials, refining the instrument panel, and giving the hood and trunk a sportier look. Sales are still running below a year ago, though, partly due to an overall slump in small car sales. )
A bad leader will inflict serious damage on any company. But for automakers, the results are often catastrophic.