Faulty Design and the Ford Pinto

FaultyDesign and the Ford Pinto

Whereascompanies are attuned to ethical operations and consideration,corruption is widespread in various aspects. Corruption withinorganizations is thought to be propelled by managers givenunwarranted practices in the organizations that potentially blindsits employees.

Thename Henry Ford conjures up elements of the American dream thequintessential self-made is described as an American billionaire anda hero in many of the American course books (Dyrud, p. 554). However,the FMC has its darker side of engaging in some spectacular ethicalbreaches. Most probably familiar with the Pinto’s exploding gastanks fiasco in the 1970s that saw the death of many workersfollowing the explosions (Dyrud, p 554). Consequently, the vastmajority of managers mean to run ethical organizations yet corporatecorruption is widespread within their organization (Bazerman &ampTenbrunsel, p. 534). As such this paper seeks to discuss unethicalbreaches that made the gas tanks explode basing on the FMC ethicaldecisions and the factors that led to making these decisions.

TheFMC, a compact car manufacturing company, had all the earmarks ofconscious top-down corruption leading to unethical decisions thatresulted in the gas tank explosion (Bazerman &amp Tenbrunsel, p. 4).The corrupt deeds in the company from the top management led to thefailure in proper decision making in the manufacturing process.Consequently, the greed of the managers led to the explosion of thetank that resulted in massive deaths in the 1970s (Boucher, p. 535).In this regard, the management of the FMC needed to practiceprofessional and basic ethics in solving and making a criticaldecision about the activities in the company. This would havesignificantly helped in curbing the gas explosion that caused severeharm to the general public.

Conclusively,taking a close look at American icons such as Henry Ford has anenormous pedagogical value. Consequently, the managerial team needsto be well-versed in ethical conduct to ensure proper managementskills and avoid failure in the FMC products such as the explodingtanks that happened in the 1970’s. As such, proper ethical conductneeds to be considered by many companies from the top management ofthe entire workforce. As a result unexpected and severe consequencesresulting from corruption, deeds shall not be experienced.


Bazerman,Max &amp Ann, Tenbrunsel. “Ethical Breakdowns”. HarvardBusiness Review(2015): 1-14.

Dyrud,Marilyn. Engineering Ethics and Corporate America: The Case of FordMotor Company. Session ETD-535 (2015): 535-570.

Boucher,Dave. “Revisionist claims turn history into a political battle”. TheTennessean(2014): 535-570.