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Monday, September 18, 2017

Toyota Marks 25 Years of Knowledge Sharing with North American Small Business and Non-Profits by Engaging New Sectors

Toyota Production System Helps Make Sustainable Organizations, Produce Jobs, Improve Lives


Ace Metal Crafts in Bensenville, Illinois, needed to find a way to reduce its production lead time.  Harbor-UCLA Medical Center’s eye clinic wanted to serve more patients. SBP sought to reduce the amount of time it takes to rebuild homes after natural disasters. These are some of the more than 300 organizations throughout North America that have collaborated with Toyota to find better ways of doing their day-to-day work.

For 25 years, Toyota Motor North America, through its Toyota Production System Support Center (TSSC), has shared the “Toyota Production System,” (TPS) the same operational philosophy and practices the company follows in its own factories to make automobiles.

The company started sharing its know-how with small to mid-sized manufacturers, later expanding and applying the system beyond manufacturing to government entities, non-profits involved in disaster recovery and hunger relief, and, more recently, healthcare organizations.

Today, Toyota announced that its knowledge-sharing efforts will now be extended to sectors including retail and construction, among other sectors in North America.

“Our years of manufacturing experience have taught us that small improvements in a process can make a big difference — and we’ve learned that this approach can help other organizations outside of manufacturing, too,” said Terry Horinouchi, president of TSSC. “Through our collaborations over the years, our partners have acquired the knowledge to feed more clients, build more homes, improve quality of care, gain more business, and preserve or even create jobs in North America.”

The goal of TSSC is to equip non-Toyota organizations with the tools to solve operational problems, maximize available resources, and preserve or even create jobs.  

Through philosophies of TPS, ACE Metals Crafts reduced its production lead time by 38 percent, retained its largest client and added more jobs; Harbor-UCLA Medical Center reduced the time from check-in to discharge by half for their patients and increased the number of new patients seen each day; and SBP reduced the amount of time takes to rebuild a home after a natural disaster from an average of 116 days to 60 days (48 percent improvement).

“Toyota engages other organizations with our know-how so that they can build a culture of continuous improvement,” said Chris Nielsen, executive vice president of product support and chief quality officer of Toyota Motor North America. “We see strong opportunity in organizations in sectors other than automotive or manufacturing, and are excited to see how TSSC can collaborate with them to help improve processes, maximize operations, build more resilient communities, and serve more people.”

To commemorate the 25th anniversary, TSSC held an event with various partners across sectors to share experiences and academia to discuss TPS and how it is applied to various organizations. Panels included, “Made in America: TPS in manufacturing and much more” and “TPS in Healthcare: Opportunities and Challenges Ahead.”

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Priced for Adventure! All-New 2018 RAV4 Adventure Grade Starts at $27,700

•Exclusive Exterior Styling and Interior Features
•Standard Tow Prep Package and Available Cold Weather Package
•Arrives at Dealers Nationwide This Month


The outdoor adventure bucket list just got longer thanks to the much-anticipated showroom arrival of the 2018 Toyota RAV4 Adventure grade that adds exclusive exterior styling features with grade-specific interior touches to the RAV4.
 
First revealed at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show, the 2018 RAV4 Adventure slots in between the XLE and SE gas grades. On the outside, large over-fender flares and 18-inch five-spoke black alloy wheels with 235/55R18 tires are ready to play in the dirt. The RAV4 Adventure grade also includes unique gray lower valance panels and rocker panel guards, black headlight bezels, black fog lamp surround, roof rails, and exclusive Adventure badging. Drivers and passengers can enjoy the RAV4 Adventure while riding a bit higher – overall height increases by 10 mm, and ground clearance rises to 6.5 in., up from 6.1 in.
 
Exclusive interior features include carbon-fiber-like trim panels, leather-wrapped shift knob, “RAV4 Adventure” logoed door sill protectors, and all-weather floor and cargo mats with “RAV4 Adventure” badging. New and exclusive for the RAV4 Adventure grade is a 120V/100W power outlet in the cargo area which can serve as a convenient portable charging station.
 
The active lifestyle-inspired RAV4 Adventure grade will be available in front-wheel drive (FWD) with an Automatic Limited Slip Differential, or in Dynamic Torque Control All-Wheel-Drive (AWD).  Both versions feature a standard Tow Prep Package that includes an upgraded radiator and supplemental engine oil and transmission fluid coolers. When properly equipped with the available tow hitch receiver and wiring harness, the Adventure grade can tow 2,900 lbs. with FWD models and 3,500 lbs. with Dynamic Control AWD models.
 
As with all RAV4 models, the Adventure grade will come standard with Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P) and Hill-Start Assist Control (HAC). TSS-P includes the Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection function (PCS w/ PD); Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist function (LDA w/ SA); Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) and Automatic High Beams (AHB). The RAV4 Adventure grade is available in five exterior colors including Black, Magnetic Gray Metallic, Silver Sky Metallic, Super White, and, new to the RAV4 palette and for an additional cost, Ruby Flare Pearl.
 
Additional available features exclusive to RAV4 Adventure grade include optional heated fabric front row seats with power driver’s seat, heated leather steering wheel, and wiper de-icer as part of a new Cold Weather Package.
 
The 2018 RAV4 Adventure is built exclusively at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada Inc. (TMMC) and will be available in dealerships later this month.
 
2018 RAV4 Adventure MSRP
 
Model #GradeDrive18MY MSRP
4445AdventureFWD$27,700
4446AdventureAWD$28,400
 
 
Prices are manufacturer’s suggested retail prices (MSRP) excluding the delivery, processing and handling (DPH) fee of $995. The DPH fee for vehicles distributed by Southeast Toyota (SET) and Gulf States Toyota (GST) may vary.
 
Limited Warranty
 
Toyota’s 36-month/36,000 mile basic new-vehicle warranty applies to all components other than normal wear and maintenance items. Additional 60-month warranties cover the powertrain for 60,000 miles and against corrosion with no mileage limitation.
 
The 2018 RAV4 also comes standard with ToyotaCare, a complimentary plan covering normal factory-scheduled maintenance and 24-hour roadside assistance for two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

All-New Toyota Camry Ignites the Senses

Multi-Channel Marketing Campaign Taps Driver Emotions, Sensations with Striking All-New 2018 Camry – America’s Best-Selling Sedan for Past 15 Years



The all-new Toyota Camry is here with a striking new look and a hot new marketing campaign that’s set to tap into drivers’ emotions and the sensations they will feel when driving the vehicle. While purchasing a Camry continues to be a smart and rational choice, the 2018 Camry now delivers the magic and excitement drivers crave. These emotions are highlighted in the “Sensations” campaign, which compels drivers to love the new Camry for all the “wrong” reasons. The campaign will cover multiple media channels, including broadcast, cinema, social, print, digital and out-of-home placements.
 
Rather than telling customers how it feels to drive the all-new Camry, this campaign shows them through impactful and evocative imagery that clearly conveys a specific feeling generated by some aspect of the Camry’s styling, safety, technology and performance. The goal of the campaign is to introduce people to an inspiring, more emotional, more exciting driving experience that will make every driver feel special.
 
The fully-integrated campaign was developed under Total Toyota (T2), the total market model that creates a cohesive marketing approach between Toyota’s agencies of record, including Saatchi & Saatchi, Conill, Burrell Communications and interTrend Communications.
 
“The launch of the next-generation Camry is incredibly important for Toyota, and we wanted to create a campaign that matched its excellence and the excitement of the new design. ‘Sensations’ perfectly conveys what people will feel driving the new Camry,” said Ed Laukes, group vice president, marketing, Toyota. “Once again, our Total Toyota agency partners at Saatchi & Saatchi, Conill, Burrell and interTrend elevated our expectations and delivered an outstanding integrated campaign resonating with what Toyota envisions and what our owners will experience while driving the car.”
 
Broadcast
A total of eight broadcast spots were developed using multicultural insights aimed at a transcultural audience. The commercials highlight specific vehicle strengths while introducing customers to the emotions they will feel while driving the vehicle.
 
Four broadcast spots feature dynamic visual imagery along with legendary music hits meant to bring emotion to life and tell the story of the all-new Camry. In three spots – “Thrill,” “Wonder” and “Indulge” – the music of classics like Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now,” Roxette’s “The Look” and “What a Wonderful World” allow the vocals to act as an emotionally powerful narrative. In a fourth spot, "Wild," the powerful sounds of Suzi Quatro’s “Wild One” drive an exciting new vision of how it feels to drive the all-new Camry. Every spot is supported by near-musical sounds recorded directly from the Camry itself.
 
“Striking” and ”Rebellious” communicate the kinds of emotional highs the Camry can inspire, represented by high-octane beats and fast-action editing. “Strut” transforms a routine run for pizza with a cool slice of style. And “Captivating” captures the bond between parent and child as they discover together the thrilling features in their new car.
 
Digital
 
In the “Sensations” digital campaign, users are invited to interact with the creative in combination with unique video content. Additionally, an interactive ad unit will highlight various features of the Camry by providing an auditory experience delivered to mobile devices. When opened, users will be prompted to tap bubbles titled “rebellious,” “thrill,” “serenity,” among others, that take them into a series of interactive experiences with sound by a simple movement of the phone or finger on the screen. A different creative execution incorporates ASMR technology (autonomous sensory meridian response) – a tingling many people experience when listening to certain sounds – to magnify sensations, create rich sight and sound content and highlight the extraordinary features of the new Camry.
 
Social
 
An  innovative social media campaign takes a unique approach to targeting Twitter audiences. Short social videos, each coming to life with different emotion-eliciting emojis, will be targeted to Twitter users based upon their recent emoji use on the platform. The “Sensations” campaign marks the first time this advertising strategy – with custom-built creative – has been employed by an automotive brand on Twitter.
 
Additionally, a series of artistic snackable videos playing with visual metaphors for the feelings that the new Camry will provoke will be featured on Facebook and Twitter. Utilizing a variety of assets like snackable videos, stills and GIFs, Instagram will create a collage that displays the vehicle, its features and the feelings it elicits.
 
Print & Out-of-home
 
Print ads will use broadcast campaign visuals to push the emotional envelope for the all-new Camry sending senses into overload and encouraging drivers to indulge, wonder and stay wild. Using CGI (computer generated imagery), the Camry print campaign features nine traditional print placements along with an experiential magazine insert in targeted publications that allows the reader to feel the sensational impact of driving the new 2018 Camry. With the out-of-home campaign, the brand-focused creative prominently features the new vehicle and logo in front of a distinctive wall of stylized auto parts, utilizing a similar look and feel to that of the print executions.
 
About the 2018 Toyota Camry
 
The eighth-generation Camry has gone through a total evolution, from a proven, dependable and safe car to one that also possesses a more exciting and emotional character, thanks to its newfound sporty performance and eye-catching style.

The new Camry utilizes TNGA (Toyota New Global Architecture) which represents a completely new strategy to the way the company designs, engineers and packages its vehicles. TNGA retains all of Toyota’s traditional values of superlative build quality and safety while injecting a fun driving experience that plays on all the senses. The physical manifestation is the usage of a new engine, transmission and GA-K platform.
 
The “Sensations” spots are available for viewing here. View photos of the All-new Camry here. The vehicle is on sale now in dealerships.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Toyota Recognized as a Top 10 Company Changing the World by Fortune Magazine



For the second time in three years, Toyota has been named to Fortune magazine’s Change the World List. Ranking Toyota at #8 of the top 50 companies, Fortune recognized Toyota for its hydrogen strategy to reduce carbon emissions and the mass market introduction of the hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the Mirai.
   
Based on the shared-value principle of “doing well by doing good,” the list recognizes leading global innovators that are making progress toward solving the world’s most pressing social or environmental problems as a key component of their competitive strategies.

“Toyota is proud to be recognized by Fortune, once again, as an agent of change,” said Jim Lentz, Toyota Motor North America chief executive officer. “As one of the world’s largest automakers, Toyota is in the unique position to shape the future of mobility. The Mirai hydrogen fuel cell vehicle is leading the way toward positive change and a more sustainable tomorrow.”

Fortune in partnership with FSG, a nonprofit social-impact consulting firm, the Shared Value Initiative, a global platform for organizations seeking business solutions to social challenges, and Professor Michael E. Porter of Harvard Business School, evaluate and rank the companies by three factors: measurable social impact, business results and degree of innovation. The final 50 Change the World honorees were then selected by the editors of Fortune based on the magazine’s own reporting and analysis.

This marks the second time in three years that Toyota has been recognized by Fortune’s Change the World list. Toyota earned the number three spot on the inaugural Change the World list in 2015 for its success with hybrid vehicles. According to the Shared Value Initiative, companies that made in a previous year are “rarely considered for a second year in a row.”

The full Fortune Change the World list is available now on Fortune’s website at http://fortune.com/change-the-world and on newsstands September 11.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Toyota Celebrates 10-year Partnership with Habitat for Humanity



Toyota Motor North America Research & Development (TMNA R&D) is doubling its impact with Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley (Habitat Huron Valley) by providing full house renovation funding for two houses, totaling $80,000, for two Ypsilanti single moms. More than 300 volunteers this year will help renovate the two homes in honor of the 10-year partnership between the two.
 
“The continued commitment of Toyota to help renovate homes is invaluable in our work toward creating affordable homeownership in Washtenaw County,” said Sarah Stanton, Executive Director of Habitat Huron Valley. “Toyota’s investment in our organization has made a tremendous local impact on our communities. Toyota’s strong support has helped us grow from building a handful of houses 30 years ago to renovating 19 houses and providing home improvements to an additional 1,000 existing homeowners this year.”
 
Since 2007, Toyota Motor North America Research & Development  has helped build or renovate 11 homes in Ypsilanti, Mich. They have donated more than $386,800 and have given more than 17,000 employee volunteer hours with Habitat Huron Valley. This year, TMNA R&D doubled its impact with more than 300 employees volunteering for more than 1,800 hours at the houses.
Additionally, Toyota Motor North America Research & Development  has also provided a representative to serve on the Habitat Huron Valley Board of Directors and additional Habitat committees, such as the Family Selection Committee, for the past 5 years.
 
“Toyota and Habitat Huron Valley have strengthened bonds between co-workers, made lasting friendships and picked up a new skill or two on build days,” said Charan Lota, Executive Manager Toyota Motor North America R&D and Habitat Huron Valley Board Member. “We look forward to continuing this relationship for years to come. Thank you to Habitat Huron Valley for the opportunity to make a difference. We value our strong partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley and nationally.”
 
In celebration of Toyota Motor North America Research & Development  40th Anniversary here in Michigan,  they are sponsoring the future homes of two single moms, Adriana Pence and Tiffany Cole. Pence and 6-year-old daughter Ysela moved to Michigan in 2013. Pence is employed by the University of Michigan and loves spending time swimming, coloring and playing dolls with Ysela. Cole is mom to 1-year-old Jeremiah and currently expecting a daughter due this month. Like all Habitat homeowners, Pence and Cole are each required to complete 250 ‘sweat equity’ hours, attend financial management and home maintenance classes and provide a $1,000 down payment on their homes.
 
With the help of full-house sponsors, such as Toyota Motor North America Research & Development, Habitat Huron Valley is hoping to renovate 19 houses in Washtenaw County for local low-income families and individuals who are qualified and approved for the Habitat Home Ownership Program in fiscal year 2018.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Toyota Creates “Connected Technologies” to Advance In-Car User Experience

Newly formed team to include Connected Vehicle, Information Technology and R&D members


Toyota Motor North America today announced the decision to form a new group focused on delivering industry-leading user experiences and new technologies for its Toyota and Lexus vehicles. Leveraging the company’s new “One Toyota” structure, the newly formed “Connected Technologies” group will have approximately 100 positions and will include members from Toyota’s existing teams working on connected vehicles, information systems, and research and development. Combining Toyota’s various strategy, planning, development, engineering and operations for connected service and hardware systems, will help advance and personalize the in-car technology experience for customers. The transition to the new group will start immediately.
 
“In-car, connected vehicle technology is a high priority for us because its impact on the customer experience is becoming an increasingly important factor in their purchase decisions,” said Jim Lentz, CEO of Toyota Motor North America. “Thanks to the new One Toyota structure, we are removing barriers among our North American teams that work on connected vehicles to create a more cohesive and empowered team to listen to and create an ever-better connected car experience for customers.”
 
Connected Technologies will be based in Plano and report to Zack Hicks. Hicks will continue in his two current roles, as both CIO of Toyota Motor North America and as the CEO of Toyota Connected North America, while adding this new responsibility.
 
“Our new team will double-down our efforts on connected vehicles so we can provide our Toyota and Lexus customers a more human experience,” commented Hicks. “Connected vehicles are the next step in a personalized driving experience, emphasizing your preferences as a driver thanks to better technology, improving the customer’s ownership experience over time.”
 
Connected vehicle technology includes one or more connections to the Internet, such as via smartphone or satellite. There are two areas of experience that are focused on: driver-centric and car-centric. Driver-centric content, like internet-connected radio, cloud-based content, and apps, help personalize the driver’s car ownership experience. The other, car-centric content, offers companies like Toyota the opportunity for remote diagnostics, over-the-air software updates, cyber-security, and vehicle relationship management. The market for connected vehicles is growing rapidly as increased Internet speeds and products become more widely available.
 
 
About Toyota 
Toyota (NYSE:TM) has been a part of the cultural fabric in the U.S. and North America for 60 years, and is committed to advancing sustainable, next-generation mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands. During that time, Toyota has created a tremendous value chain as our teams have contributed to world-class design, engineering, and assembly of more than 33 million cars and trucks in North America, where we operate 14 manufacturing plants (10 in the U.S.) and directly employ more than 46,000 people (more than 36,000 in the U.S.).  Our 1,800 North American dealerships (nearly 1,500 in the U.S.) sold almost 2.7 million cars and trucks (2.45 million in the U.S.) in 2016 – and about 85 percent of all Toyota vehicles sold over the past 15 years are still on the road today.  
 
Toyota partners with community, civic, academic, and governmental organizations to address our society’s most pressing mobility challenges. We share company resources and extensive know-how to support non-profits to help expand their ability to assist more people move more places. For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyotanewsroom.com

Toyota Financial Services Offers Payment Relief to Customers Affected by Hurricane Harvey

Toyota Financial Services (TFS) announced it is offering payment relief options to its customers affected by Hurricane Harvey. This broad outreach includes any Toyota Financial Services (TFS) or Lexus Financial Services (LFS) customer in the designated disaster areas. 
 
We at Toyota Financial Services care about the safety and well-being of our customers and want to help those impacted by the hurricane.  Impacted lease and finance customers residing in the devastated areas may be eligible to take advantage of several payment relief options, some of which include:
  • extensions and lease deferred payments 
  • redirecting billing statements
  • arranging phone or on-line payments
 
Toyota Financial Services will proactively attempt to contact customers in the affected areas to assess their needs and inform customers of the options available to them. 
 
Customers who would like to discuss their account options are encouraged to contact TFS or LFS:
 
Toyota Financial Services customers may call (800) 874-8822 or contact TFS via email using the Mail Center function after logging into ToyotaFinancial.com.
 
Lexus Financial Services customers may call 800-874-7050 or contact LFS via email using the Mail Center function after logging into LexusFinancial.com.
 
We extend our heartfelt thoughts to those affected by the natural disaster. 
 
About Toyota Financial Services
Toyota Financial Services (TFS) is the finance and insurance brand for Toyota in the United States, offering retail auto financing and leasing through Toyota Motor Credit Corporation (TMCC) and Toyota Lease Trust. TFS also offers extended service contracts through Toyota Motor Insurance Services (TMIS). The company services Lexus dealers and customers using the Lexus Financial Services brand. TFS currently employs approximately 3,100 associates nationwide, and has assets totaling over $119 billion. It is part of a worldwide network of comprehensive financial services offered by Toyota Financial Services Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corporation. We announce material financial information using the investor relations section of our website (www.toyotafinancial.com) and SEC filings. We use these channels, press releases, and social media to communicate about our company, our services and other issues. While not all information we post on social media is of a material nature, some information could be material. Therefore, we encourage those interested in our company to review our posts on Twitter at www.twitter.com/toyotafinancial
 
Points of Light has named TFS one of its Civic 50, which recognizes the most community-minded companies in the nation.  For more information about the company’s support of financial literacy, youth development programs, and other community initiatives, please visit www.tfsinthecommunity.com.
 
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