Of course, ALL manufacturers should should shoot for 0% failure rate and 100% success rate. You are correct that for that one customer to have something fail, it is devastating at the time. I've been there - stranded! However in defense of ANY manufacturer, it is virtually impossible to achieve that with literally thousands of parts all inter-working and one simple fatigue failure, or piece of dirt can shut down the whole car/motorcycle.
Usually, recalls, are for items/situations that have shown a record of being a problem across the line of all the cars/motorcycles. Usually because of some poor quality item, wrong material, or some part under-engineered. Very difficult.
Finally, I agree that perception is pliable, but it seems clear to me that both Honda and Toyota have had such a long history of very good perception that it would seem to me that if it weren't true, public expression of failures would seem to dent that high perception.