GM, of course rebutted the findings of Dateline, made a request to inspect the vehicles used in the footage and study the videos NBC released. Harry Pearce, GM's executive vice president at the time, gave an exhaustive press conference regarding Dateline's coverage, a press conference that involved what those in the legal field call "a shitload of evidence." One piece of evidence was a letter from NBC claiming that the vehicles used in the video were "junked" and, as a result, their inspection would be impossible.
Another piece of evidence was the fucking cars themselves, and they were astonishingly not junked. Before the folks at Dateline could get their act together and respond, "Oh, you wanted the cars we used in the footage, oh, OK, we thought you said cards, and we were like, 'huh?' Ah, but no, the cars are fine...," Pearce was ready to move onto Act 2 of Ruining NBC's Shit: The Musical.
Pearce also discovered that the explosion in the video wasn't caused by a faulty fuel tank, but was actually caused by remote detonation of explosives the producers rigged to the trucks prior to filming, and a person was standing off camera pushing a button a split second before the filmed impact. A lot of sneaky journalism scandals can be attributed to one scummy guy with delusions of blowjobs from big-boobed reporter groupies, but not this time.
Five different people were responsible for the idea. Three got fired, one resigned and one got the priest treatment--she was transferred to another station. We at Cracked like to think the best about people, so the only explanation is that they were drunk. For weeks. And a crazy ex-GM employee with an axe to grind was holding their daughters hostage.
It was a matter of weeks before GM initiated a lawsuit, pulled their ads and put out a two hour press release skullfucking Dateline into oblivion, all while cackling, "Who's exploding now, motherfucker?!" Jane Pauley read an apology on air, Dateline learned their lesson and moved on to more dignified reporting, and this also marked the last time GM ran into any trouble whatsoever, at all.