Toyota Cars – Quest for Quality and Technology


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Toyota was established as a joint venture between Kirloskar Group and Toyota Motor Corporation, in 1997 with a burning desire to carve its own niche in the Indian car market.

The first Toyota car in the Indian car was the Toyota Qualis in 2000. Thereafter Toyota Camry, Toyota Corolla, and Toyota Innova were introduced in the Indian market. Though the numbers of car models are low but all the Toyota cars have created a benchmark in the industry with their rugged structure, excellent appeal, and unmatched performance.

Toyota Innova is one of the leading SUV in the Indian car market that has won the hearts of many car consumers. Even today, there are number of Innova found on Indian roads. The company has recently introduced a facelift version of Innova that has added to the worth and demand of the car in the industry.

Today, after years Toyota has accomplished its own space in the Indian car industry and is still strengthening its presence in the country. The company is continuously creating intelligent solutions to meet the present day mobility challenges and introduce technologies well suited for the future generation.

The reasons why Toyota Cars are successful and winning in both the domestic and international car market are as follows:

Innovation

The quest for innovation is the first philosophy of Toyota cars. This makes a strong platform purely based on advanced and new technologies that may improve the present day status of the car industry and further brighten the industry in years to come. Unconventional ideas, new concepts, improved marketing strategies, and car testing in real-life conditions, are all the steeping stones of Toyota’s success. The company is still in process to introduce new concepts and advancements to fit perfect to the growing needs of the increasing customer base and the need of future drivers.

Engine

Improving car engine technology every now and then with the changing pace of time and requirement, is another philosophy of Toyota. The company has the best of engines that make Toyota cars an asset for the car owner as well as the industry. Toyota has designed a range of award winning engines with highest degree of quality and performance standards. The unique Toyota engine, advanced variable valve technology (VVT-i), is known to deliver best performance, good responsiveness, excellent fuel efficiency, and reduced emissions.

Common-rail turbo diesels (D-4D) and the Toyota Hybrid System (THS) are also among the best engines in the Indian car market.

Safety

Safety is always a top priority for all car manufacturers today but for Toyota its one of the most important business philosophy. The company is introducing innovative and advanced car safety features like advanced steering control, SRS airbags, traction control, anti-lock brake, and a number of other features to ensure safety for both the driver and the passengers. All Toyota cars are carefully and smartly designed to maximize safety. Even the car body and chassis are built in such a way that it absorbs the impact of collision and provide maximum protection.

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South African-made Toyota Corollas Head to Europe


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The South African subsidiary of motor company Toyota is expected to export its locally produced Toyota Corollas from Durban to Europe starting next year. This is a move set to build up the economy of KwaZulu-Natal.

The decision was taken after a meeting on Wednesday in Tokyo, Japan between the provincial government and Toyota representatives.

The vice chairperson of Toyota Motor Corporation, Katsuhiro Nakagawa said that Toyota South Africa would produce Corollas specifically to be exported to Europe. The statement was made at the meeting with KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sbu Ndebele.

In his statement, Mr. Nakagawa announced that almost 50 engineers had already been sent to South Africa to help with the manufacturing of the vehicles. He said that Toyota is determined to produce more vehicles in South Africa for exportation to other countries which is vital for South Africa’s economy.

Furthermore, he said that they also wanted an increased presence in Japanese automotive parts suppliers in South Africa since the country was considered to be the gateway to the rest of the continent. According to him, they want to make their South African plant more competitive compared to Toyota plants in other countries.

He acknowledged that the training of workers would be necessary to achieve, in a bid to ensure the competitiveness of their South African plant. He uttered that if they train more workers, more automotive parts supplier companies will go to South Africa.

He also explained that they planned to put up a Toyota Training School in South Africa, which would benefit the company’s employees and create a much needed skills base for growth.

The production of the latest model of the Toyota Corolla in South Africa is well in process and will be launched in August this year.

In his speech, Mr. Nakagawa further said that they are trying hard to introduce new models of Toyota to be produced is South Africa as well.

Premier Ndebele appreciated the assurance shown by the company to South Africa, particularly to KwaZulu-Natal. He said that they appreciate the new investment of more than R4 billion at the plant at Prospecton in Durban. But he would also like to see Toyota producing other automotive components in KwaZulu-Natal.

Mr. Ndebele said that they would welcome and highly appreciate the development of an Automotive Supplier Park in the province as it is important to accelerate training of the current and future workforce.

He added that training is needed all the time for the market elsewhere.

Toyota Motor Corporation is the world’s leading automaker. Maker of quality Toyota tonneau covers, the car company has held its reputation as an excellent manufacturer since its first year of existence.

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Toyota’s Winning Trio in Canadian Car of the Year Awards


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Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) members pick Camry LE, Camry Hybrid and RAV4 as category winners for the 2007 Canadian Car of the Year. Toyota Trio were given the top honors. Toyota Camry LE won in the Best New Family Car, Toyota Camry Hybrid, in the Best New Family Car, and Toyota RAV4 V6 Sport in the Best New SUV/CUV category.

“Toyota is very happy to accept these awards and on behalf of everyone at Toyota in Canada, I’d like to thank AJAC’s members for these honors,” said Stephen Beatty, Managing Director at Toyota Canada Inc. “The Toyota Camry is North America’s most popular passenger car. The Toyota Camry Hybrid represents an important evolution of gasoline-electric hybrid technology in the second most popular market segment in Canada. And the redesigned Toyota RAV4 will be manufactured in Woodstock, Ontario when our new assembly plant, currently under construction, begins production in 2008.”

Toyota Camry, a midsize car built in Georgetown, Kentucky plant, is the best-selling car in the United States for 8 of the last 9 years starting in 1997. Now in its sixth generation, auto parts for Toyota Camry have been notably redesigned though the length of the car remained unchanged. Kentucky plant produces approximately 45,000 Camrys annually.

Toyota Camry OEM parts boast functionality and style. The new Camry is also being manufactured by Toyota Motor Corporation Australia. The new generation Camry in Australia went on sale last August. Its model range is composed of the Altise, Ateva, Sportivo and Grande.

This year, Toyota created a hybrid version of Camry. It was introduced alongside with the redesigned Camry. The car employs Hybrid Synergy Drive setup, which is identical to that of Prius, Highlander Hybrid and Lexus RX 400h. Camry Hybrid uses a 4-cylinder gasoline engine that is capable of producing 192 horsepower. Standard features of the Camry Hybrid include knee airbags, side torso airbags and side-curtain airbags, remote entry and start.

Toyota RAV4, on the other hand, is a compact crossover SUV which was significantly redesigned for the 2006 model year. For now, Toyota RAV4 auto parts are assembled in the automaker’s Tahara, Aichi, Japan assembly plant. However, the assembly is expected to be transferred in Woodstock, Ontario, Canada assembly plant when the latter comes online.

“These three vehicles are extremely important to Toyota’s vision of the future of personal transportation in Canada,” Mr. Beatty continued. “Therefore, we’re pleased that they have been selected by AJAC’s members as the best in their respective categories.”

AJAC is an association composed of professional journalists, writers and photographers who are responsible for the coverage in Canada’s auto industry.

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Prius Delievers Slow Relief at the Pump


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In the ironic words of Kermit the Frog, “it isn’t easy being green”. The irony is noted by our present day efforts to conserve energy or in other words become “green”. The notion behind this movement is fueled by two variables: cost and the well being of our global environment. As gas prices at the pump skyrocket, the demand for better gas mileage rises. Also, as fears of global warming start to materialize, the demand of a “green” vehicles rise as well. We have seen automobile manufacturers, who produce hybrids, capitalize on this sellers market, created by the two variables above. Toyota Motor Corporation has been marketing to our fears and petrol price woes with the Prius for just about seven years now in the US. Has the existence of the Prius over the past seven years placated our fears? Many of us would like to think so, especially those of you who are Prius owners. However, the sad truth is that it falls short of the marketed claims, producing unsatisfactory results across the board.

Let us first look at gasoline consumption. The 2007 Prius receives 46 miles per gallon and wears this stat like a green badge of honor. This means that the 11.9 gallon fuel tank on the Prius only needs to be topped off about twice every four weeks (based on the national average automobiles that are driven 12,000 miles per year). Thus, the Prius consumes only $1,043.48 in gasoline per year, with a price per gallon of $4.00. How can these savings be unsavory? Would less gas equate to greater gas savings? It sure would, but let us enter a common scenario. Recent economic conditions force you to cut your costs. Your current car is a gas-guzzling Hummer H2. You decide the best route to go is trade in for a mid sized sedan. Instantly you think “Toyota” and find the 2007 Prius and the 2007 Camry your best two options. Standing on the lot, we see the sticker price and MPG. The Camry shows a base price of $18,085.00 and a total of 24 MPG. On the other side of the balance we have the Prius. With 46 MPG and a base price of $23,730.00, it is hard to tell which automobile will be the most cost efficient.

To help turn this into an effortless decision, I have constructed a schedule of cost comparison between our two prospective cars. The equation used to forecast these costs is Approximate Miles Driven per year/ MPG = Total Gallons Used. To convert this into a dollar figure, multiply Total Gallons Used by the Price of Fuel. This yields the average cost of fuel each vehicle will consume yearly. The average cost of fuel is then added to the sticker price of the vehicle. The schedule will illustrate the cost of purchasing and fueling of each car, allowing us to simply compare and contrast.

Model Prius Camry

Base

Price $23,730 $18,085

Year

1 24,773.48 20,085.00

2 25,816.96 22,085.00

3 26,860.43 24,085.00

4 27,903.91 26,085.00

5 28,947.39 28,085.00

6 29,990.87 30,085.00

* Using 12,000 miles driven per year and $4.00 per gallon. Both models are taken from 2007

The schedule clearly displays the Camry holding the cost advantage over the Prius for the first five years. It is not until the 6th year that exceptionally high gas mileage of the Prius starts to off set the cost. If you are cost conscious, you will most likely decide to finance the Camry for five years and look to trade it in after it is paid off. Or maybe you are environmentally conscious, and it is not the cost that motivates your decision but consumption of gasoline. The person with the “green” mindset would opt for the Prius, but are there hidden environmental infractions committed by the Prius?

The environmentalist who decides on the Prius is only thinking in terms of personal consumption, which is displayed in the schedule above. A true tree hugger would be concerned about total energy consumption, which accounts for all energy used in producing, consuming, and disposing of a product. The Prius boasts high gas mileage, but what it saves in petroleum consumption, it wastes in production. As we know, hybrids consist of an internal combustion engine and a battery powered electric motor. The battery is made from Nickel that is mined in Sudbury, Ontario and smelted a short distance from the mines. The smelting process produces large amounts of sulfur dioxide, directly causing highly concentrated acid rain to fall in the surrounding area. The acid rain has destroyed the surrounding wilderness leaving in its wake a barren waste land with no sign of life. Moreover, NASA often uses this barren area to test and train astronauts in moon buggy maneuver, since the outskirts of Sudbury, Ontario sharply resembles the landscape found on the moon.

Not only is the Prius’ manufacturing pollution one of the worst in the automotive industry, but the smelted nickel goes on a petroleum dependant journey that travels over 10,000 miles. Transported by diesel locomotive and container ship, the amount of fuel used in this stage of production seems to fade the luster Toyota Motor Corporation painted on the Prius and its performance.

Ask Toyota if it is easy being “green”. I am willing to bet their answer would be similar to our proverbial green profits’ ironic statement above. It seems we can not overcome barriers of energy consumption; we restrict energy consumption in one area and double consumption in other areas, allowing companies like Toyota, to hide behind their green badge of marketability gold. Prius brightly displays this badge, but now we find it is just a façade erected by the marketing department, with one objective: to influence public perception before they have a chance to hear or read an article like this.

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Number of Toyota Pre-prod Vehicles Goes Up


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To ensure the highest quality of Toyota Corollas, the Toyota Motor Corporation is now going to double the number of units for this vehicle model. The newest Toyota Corolla would be sent out for sale in Japan in the upcoming autumn season. And the officials from Toyota were the ones who announced such a plan for the Toyota Corollas. However, the Toyota officials did not disclose if they were also going to enforce such a plan for auto parts Toyota so as to also ensure quality.

From the usual 150 Toyota Corolla units in pre-production, Toyota, along with Kanto Auto Works Ltd., would be now producing some 300 Toyota Corolla prototypes. These would be the base of the company to see and check for quality. The company calls them the Toyota Corolla trial cars. This is indeed a very good move for the newest model of this line would be actually the tenth. And with the company having just recently suffered from vehicle and car problems, being safe with the newest batch of Toyota Corollas would surely do them good.

Of course, Toyota is not the only car maker that creates prototypes before they actually send these vehicles out for production. All auto manufacturers go through such moves. And these car manufacturers also do make use of computers to check any problems with the vehicle.

Toyota would surely not want to send out a batch of Toyota Corollas that hold car problems. After all, this vehicle model has been known in the automobile world as being a reliable vehicle. In fact, it has been in the market since 1966 making it 40 years old at present. Last 1997, this Toyota model held the title as the best selling nameplate all around the globe and is currently known as the best selling car through all time.

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