Toyota Motor Corporation Toyota Jidōsha Kabushiki-gaisha, or Toyota in short, is a Japanese automaker. It is the world's second largest automaker behind General Motors; however it ranks first in net worth, revenue, and profit. It is also the only car manufacturer to appear in the top 10 of the BrandZ ranking.
The company was founded in 1937, by Kiichiro Toyoda as a spinoff from his father's company, Toyota Industries, to create automobiles. In 1934, while still a department of Toyota Industries, it created its first product Type A engine and its first passenger car (the Toyota AA) in 1936. It is headquartered in Toyota, Aichi and Bunkyo, Tokyo, Japan. It also provides financial services through its division, Toyota Financial Services, and also creates robots in addition to automobiles. The company, along with the original Toyota Industries, forms bulk of the Toyota Group.
Toyota owns and operates Toyota, Lexus, Scion, has a majority shareholding in Daihatsu Motors, and has minority shareholdings in Fuji Heavy Industries, Isuzu Motors, and the engine, motorcycle, and marine craft manufacturer, Yamaha Motors. The company includes 522 subsidiaries. Toyota plans to produce 9.4 million vehicles in 2007. It plans to sell 10.4 million automobiles in 2008, which would be the first time an automaker has sold more than 10 million vehicles in a year. As of January 8, 2008, the company dropped "Motor" from its corporate name and calls itself simply, "Toyota Corporation" (Kabushiki-gaisha Toyota). Toyota changed the Japanese writing of its brand name from Katakana to Kanji and "Corporation" was moved from the end to the beginning.
The company began production somewhat later than its main competitors did but has gained a worldwide reputation for quality and reliability, and, if a little slowly, is responding to the challenges that face the industry today with respect to pollution and the environment.
In 1933, Toyoda Automatic Loom Works created a new division devoted to the production of automobiles under the direction of the founder's son, Kiichiro Toyoda. Kiichiro Toyoda had traveled to Europe and the United States in 1929, to investigate automobile production, and had begun researching gasoline-powered engines in 1930. Toyoda Automatic Loom Works was encouraged to develop Automobile production by the Japanese government, which needed domestic vehicle production partly due to the worldwide money shortage and partly due to the war with China.
Although the Toyota Group is best known today for its cars, it is still in the textile business and still makes automatic looms, which are now fully computerized, and electric sewing machines which are available worldwide.
Toyota Motor Co. was established as an independent and separate company in 1937. Although the founding family's name is Toyoda, the company name was changed in order to signify the separation of the founders' work life from home life, to simplify the pronunciation, and to give the company a happy beginning. Toyota is considered luckier than Toyoda in Japan, where eight is regarded as a lucky number, and eight is the number of strokes it takes to write Toyota in katakana. In Chinese, the company and its vehicles are still referred to by the equivalent characters, with Chinese reading.
During the Pacific War (World War II), the company was dedicated to truck production for the Imperial Japanese Army. Because of severe shortages in Japan, military trucks were kept as simple as possible. For example, the trucks had only one headlight on the center of the hood. The war ended shortly before a scheduled Allied bombing run on the Toyota factories in Aichi.
After the war, commercial passenger car production started in 1947, with the model SA. The quality and production principles on which Toyota is based originated in an education program from the United States Army in the postwar era. In 1950, a separate sales company, Toyota Motor Sales Co., was established (which lasted until July 1982). In April 1956, the Toyopet dealer chain was established. The following year, the Toyota Crown became the first Japanese car to be exported to the United States and Toyota's American and Brazilian divisions, Toyota Motor Sales Inc. and Toyota do Brazil S.A., were also established. Toyota began to expand in the 1960s, with a new research and development facility, a presence in Thailand was established, the 10 millionth model was produced, a Deming Prize was won, and partnerships with Hino Motors and Daihatsu were also established. The first Toyota built outside Japan was in April 1963, at Port Melbourne, in Australia. By the end of the decade, Toyota had established a worldwide presence, as the company had exported its one-millionth unit.
The Toyota Motor Company was awarded its first Japanese Quality Control Award at the start 1970s, and began participating in a wide variety of Motorsports. Due to the 1973 oil crisis, consumers in the lucrative U.S. market began turning to small cars with better fuel economy. American car manufacturers had considered small economy cars to be an "entry level" product, and their small vehicles were not made to a high level of quality in order to keep the price low. Japanese customers, however, had a long-standing tradition of demanding small fuel-efficient cars that were manufactured to a high level of quality. Because of this, companies like Toyota, Honda, and Nissan established a strong and growing presence in North America in the 1970s.
In 1982, the Toyota Motor Company and Toyota Motor Sales merged into one company, the Toyota Motor Corporation. Two years later, Toyota entered into a joint venture with GM called NUMMI, the New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc, operating an automobile manufacturing plant in Fremont, California. The factory was an old General Motors plant that had been closed for several years. Toyota then started to establish new brands at the end of the 1980s, with the launch of their luxury division, Lexus, in 1989.
In the 1990s, Toyota began to branch out from producing mostly compact cars by adding many larger and more luxurious vehicles to its lineup, including a full sized pickup, the T100 (and later the Toyota Tundra), several lines of SUVs, a sport version of the Camry, known as the Camry Solara, and the Scion brand, a group of several affordable, yet sporty, automobiles targeted specifically to young adults. Toyota also began production of the world's best selling hybrid car, the Toyota Prius, in 1997.
With a major presence in Europe, due to the success of Toyota Team Europe, the corporation decided to set up TMME, Toyota Motor Europe Marketing & Engineering, to help market vehicles in the continent. Two years later, Toyota set up a base in the United Kingdom, TMUK, as the company's cars had become very popular among British drivers. Bases in Indiana, Virginia, and Tianjin were also set up. In 1999, the company decided to list itself on the New York and London Stock Exchange.
In 2001, Toyota's Toyo Trust and Banking merged to form the UFJ, United Financials of Japan, which was accused of corruption by the Japan's government for making bad loans to alleged Yakuza crime syndicates, with executives accused of blocking Financial Service Agency inspections. The UFJ was listed among Fortune Magazine's largest money-losing corporations in the world, with Toyota's chairman serving as a director. At the time, the UFJ was one of the largest shareholders of Toyota. As a result of Japan's banking crisis, the UFJ was merged again to become Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group.
On December 7, 2004, a U.S. press release was issued stating that Toyota would be offering Sirius Satellite Radios. However, as late as Jan. 27, 2007, Sirius Satellite Radio and XM Satellite radio kits were not available for Toyota factory radios. While the press release enumerated nine models, only limited availability existed at the dealer level in the U.S. Major Lexus dealerships have been offering satellite radio kits for Lexus vehicles since 2005, in addition to factory-equipped satellite radio models.
In 2007, Toyota released an update of its full size truck, the Toyota Tundra, produced in two American factories, one in Texas and one in Indiana, and Motor Trend named the 2007 Toyota Camry "Car of the Year" for 2007. It also began the construction of two new factories, one to build the Toyota Rav4 in Woodstock, Ontario, and the other to build the Toyota Highlander in Blue Springs, Mississippi.
Toyota has grown to a large multinational corporation from where it started and expanded to different worldwide markets and countries by becoming the largest seller of cars in the beginning of 2007, the most profitable automaker ($11 billion in 2006), along with increasing sales in, among other countries, the United States. The world headquarters of Toyota are located in its home country, in Toyota, Aichi, Japan. Its subsidiary, Toyota Financial Services, sells financing and participates in other lines of business. Toyota brands include Scion and Lexus, and the corporation is part of the Toyota Group. Toyota also owns majority stakes in Daihatsu and Hino, and 8.7 percent of Fuji Heavy Industries, which manufactures Subaru vehicles. They also acquired 5.9 percent of Isuzu Motors Ltd. on November 7, 2006, and will be introducing Isuzu diesel technology into their products.
Toyota has introduced new technologies, including one of the first mass-produced hybrid gas-electric vehicles, of which it says it has sold 1 million units globally, Advanced Parking Guidance System (automatic parking), a four-speed electronically controlled automatic with buttons for power and economy shifting, and an eight-speed automatic transmission. Toyota, and Toyota-produced Lexus and Scion automobiles, consistently rank near the top in certain quality and reliability surveys, primarily J.D. Power and Consumer Reports.
In 2005, Toyota, combined with its half-owned subsidiary Daihatsu Motor Company, produced 8.54 million vehicles, about 500,000 fewer than the number produced by GM that year. Toyota has a large market share in the United States, but a small market share in Europe. Its also sells vehicles in Africa and is a market leader in Australia. Due to its Daihatsu subsidiary, it has significant market shares in several fast-growing Southeast Asian countries.
In the Fortune Global 500, Toyota Motor is the eighth largest company in the world. Since the recession of 2001, it has gained market share in the United States. Toyota's market share struggles in Europe, where its Lexus brand has three tenths of one percent market share, compared to nearly two percent market share as the U.S. luxury segment leader.
In the first three months of 2007, Toyota, together with its half-owned subsidiary Daihatsu, reported number one sales of 2.348 million units. Toyota's brand sales had risen 9.2 percent, largely on demand for Corolla and Camry sedans. The difference in performance was largely attributed to surging demand for fuel-efficient vehicles. In November 2006, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas added a facility in San Antonio. Toyota has experienced quality problems and was reprimanded by the government in Japan for its recall practices. Toyota currently maintains over 16 percent of the U.S. market share and is listed second only to GM in terms of volume. Toyota Century is the official state car of the Japanese imperial family, namely for the Emperor of Japan, Akihito.
Toyota has factories all over the world, manufacturing or assembling vehicles for local markets, including the Corolla. Toyota has manufacturing or assembly plants in Japan, Australia, Canada, Indonesia, Poland, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, France, Brazil, and more recently Pakistan, India, Argentina, Czech Republic, Mexico, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Vietnam, Venezuela, and the Philippines.
Toyota has invested considerably into cleaner-burning vehicles, such as the Toyota Prius, based on technology such as the Hybrid Synergy Drive. In 2002, Toyota successfully road-tested a new version of the RAV4, which ran on a Hydrogen fuel cell. Scientific American called the company its Business Brainwave of the Year in 2003, for commercializing an affordable hybrid car.
Toyota North America headquarters are located in New York City, and operate at a holding company level in North America. Its manufacturing headquarters is located in Erlanger, Kentucky, and is known as Toyota Motor Manufacturing North America, or TMMNA. Toyota has large presence in the United States, with five major assembly plants in Huntsville, Alabama; Georgetown, Kentucky; Princeton, Indiana; San Antonio, Texas; Buffalo, West Virginia; and a new one being built in Blue Springs, Mississippi. Toyota also has a joint-venture operation with General Motors at New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. (NUMMI), in Fremont, CA, which began in 1984, and with Subaru at Subaru of Indiana Automotive, Inc. (SIA), in Lafayette, Indiana, which started in 2006. Production on a new manufacturing plant in Tupelo, Mississippi, is scheduled for completion in 2010; it will be producing the Toyota Highlander. North America is a major automobile market for Toyota. In these assembly plants, the Toyota Camry and the 2007 Toyota Tundra are manufactured, among others. Toyota uses a number of slogans in its American TV commercials such as "It's time to move forward," "Smart way to keep moving forward," or "Moving forward." It has started producing larger trucks, such as the new Toyota Tundra, to go after the large truck market in the United States. Toyota is also pushing hybrid vehicles in the U.S., such as the Toyota Prius, Toyota Camry Hybrid, Highlander Hybrid, and various Lexus products. Toyota has sold more hybrids vehicles in the country than any other manufacturer.
Toyota directly employs around 38,340 people in North America. It has made around $16.8 billion in direct investments in North America. It has in total produced 14.8 million vehicles, 2.5 million vehicles sales (2005), 39.2 million total vehicles sales, and purchased $26.1 billion worth of "parts, materials and components" as of December 2005 in North America. It has 1,745 North American dealers and has philanthropically donated $340 million in the United States as of December 2006.
Toyota is one of the largest companies to push hybrid vehicles in the market, and one of the first to commercially mass-produce such vehicles, an example being the Toyota Prius. The company eventually began providing this option on the main smaller cars, such as Camry, and later with the Lexus divisions, producing some hybrid luxury vehicles. It labeled such technology in Toyota cars as "Hybrid Synergy Drive" and in Lexus versions as "Lexus Hybrid Drive."
The Prius has become the top selling hybrid car in America. Toyota now has three hybrid vehicles in its lineup: The Prius, Highlander, and Camry. The popular minivan Toyota Sienna is scheduled to join the hybrid lineup by 2010, and by 2030, Toyota plans to offer its entire lineup of cars, trucks, and SUVs with a Hybrid Synergy Drive option.
The Hybrid Synergy drive is the most widely rolled-out environment-friendly system in the automotive industry to date. More than 1,000,000 units have been sold, and within a few years Toyota will enlarge the number of hybrid models.
Lexus also has their own hybrid lineup, consisting of the GS 450h, RX 400h, and launched in 2007, the LS 600h/LS 600h L.
Toyota is doing plug-in hybrid vehicle (called Toyota Plug-in HV) road tests in Japan. According reports, Toyota is testing a lithium-ion battery pack in the plug-in. Their strategy is to maintain Toyota's leading position in hybrid technology with the PHEV which has an even lower environmental impact than existing hybrids, competing for mass-production with the GM Chevrolet Volt and Ford plug-in hybrids and V2G technology
Toyota has an environmental policy in place which commits the company not only to meet industry standards but to set them. It aims to produce clean and efficient vehicles and to conserve resources before its vehicles "hit the road." In addition to producing its range of hybrid vehicles, the company publishes five yearly action plans with goals intended to reduce the company's overall contribution to air pollution and global warming. It also publishes an annual environment report for the North American market. The 2007 report North America Environmental Report refers to increased awareness of "our interdependence as a global community, and our dependence on the planet."
Toyota's presence in Motorsport can be traced by to the early 1970s, when Swedish driver, Ove Andersson drove for Toyota during the RAC Rally of Great Britain. During the winter of 1972, Andersson formed Andersson Motorsport in his native country and began running a Rallying program for Toyota. The move turned out to be an impractical one and three years after establishing his team, Andersson moved its base from Sweden to Brussels, in Belgium. From there the team was renamed, Toyota Team Europe.
Toyota's first win in motorsport came at the 1975, 1000 Lakes Rally of Finland, when Hannu Mikkola and his co-driver, Atso Aho, won the event in a Toyota Corolla. Three years later, the team moved to a new base in Cologne, in western Germany. It wasn't until the 1980s that Toyota began to gain notable success, especially in the African rallies, where Bjorn Waldegaard and Juha Kankkunen were usually top of the time sheets. The team then set-up its all purpose Motorsport facility in Cologne three years later, which is still used today.
In 1990, Carlos Sainz gave Toyota its first ever Championship win in a Four-wheel drive Toyota Celica and repeated the feat 2 years later. In 1993, Toyota bought the team from Andersson and named it Toyota Motorsport GmbH, in the same year Juha Kankkunen won the WRC title and Toyota won the Contsructors' Championship, becoming the first Japanese Manufacturer to do so. This success was repeated a year earlier, but this time it was Frenchman Didier Auriol who was responsible.
1995 proved to be a difficult year for Toyota, as the team were caught using illegal turbo chargers and were given a 12-month ban by the FIA. The company returned to rallying in 1996, but its competition, notably Mitsubishi and Subaru, had a clearer advantage over their cars.
1997 would prove to be another uncompetitive year for Toyota, with the team still behind its fellow Japanese manufacturers, Subaru and Mitsubishi, and the Carlos Sainz the highest place Toyota driver in the Drivers' Championship in third place, 11 points behind champion Tommi Mäkinen. Sainz came within 1 point of the 1998 title, when his Corolla suffered an engine failure on the final stage of the final rally in Great Britain, while Toyota were within 6 points of the Contstructors' Championship, many people place the blame on Toyota's choice to run Belgian Freddy Loix as one of the team's points scoring drivers at the Rally of Spain instead of regular driver Didier Auriol, because Auriol managed to win the event ahead of second-placed Loix.
Toyota decided to quit running in the WRC at the end of the 1999 season, quoting that "all that can be achieved has been achieved." The team managed to secure the Manufacturers' title in their last season, 18 points ahead of their nearest rival Subaru, while Didier Auriol came within 10 points of the Drivers' title.
Toyota were replaced the following season by Peugeot, who went on to win the Manufacturers' title in succession from 2000-2002.
In March 2007, Toyota debuted its Super 2000 Corolla rally car, which will compete in the Australian Rally Championship]].
Toyota raced in CART from 1996 to 2002. Its early years in the series were marked by struggles. Toyota-powered cars, campaigned by the All-American Racers and PPI Motorsports teams, languished at the back of the grid, slow and unreliable. Toyota didn't even lead a lap until Alex Barron led 12 laps at the Vancouver street circuit in September 1998.
Toyota started seeing its fortunes improve in 1999, as Scott Pruett took pole position at the final race of the season at the California Speedway. The next year, Juan Pablo Montoya gave Toyota its first-ever CART win at the Milwaukee Mile, the first of 5 races won by Toyota-powered cars that year. Toyota-powered cars won six races in 2001. In 2002, Toyota's final year in the championship, it turned things around completely from its bleak debut. Toyota won the Manufacturer's championship, 10 races, and Cristiano Da Matta rode Toyota power to the driver's championship, with Bruno Junqueira, also Toyota-powered car, finished second.
Toyota started recruiting staff for their Le Mans efforts in 1997, with an aim to start a Formula One team. Toyota's efforts for a Le Mans car was the Toyota GT-One, which was driven by ex-Formula One drivers: Martin Brundle, Thierry Boutsen, and Ukyo Katayama. The 3.6 liter twin-turbo GT-Ones were beaten in 1998 and 1999, but came close to victory, breaking down late in the race. The GT-One held the lap record for the Sarthe Circuit up until 2006, however.
Toyota moved to the Indy Racing League in 2003, and provided factory support to former CART teams Penske Racing and Chip Ganassi Racing, as well as other teams. They were one of the top engines in their first year, winning the Indianapolis 500 with Gil de Ferran and the championship with Scott Dixon. However, 2004 and 2005 were not so kind and wins were few and far between. Following the 2005 season, the Penske and Ganassi teams announced they would switch engines to Honda, leaving Toyota with no championship contenders. As a result of this and their intent to re-allocate resources for NASCAR, Toyota announced they would leave the series during the off-season.
Todd Bodine became the first driver to give Toyota their first ever NASCAR championship, by winning the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Title in 2006.
After success in the Craftsman Truck Series, Toyota moved to both the Nextel Cup and Busch Series with the Toyota Camry for 2007. Three relatively new, small teams spearheaded the initial Toyota Cup program: Michael Waltrip Racing, Bill Davis Racing, and Team Red Bull. Toyota has struggled in its first season in Nextel Cup, harnessing only two poles in 36 races, and posting only one five top-5 and ten top-10 finishes across Toyota teams.
In addition to moving to Nextel Cup, Toyota also made its debut in the Busch Series in 2007. The car manufacturer found relatively more success in the Busch Series than Cup, winning two races with Jason Leffler and David Reutimann and posting 15 top-5 finishes and 35 top-10 finishes after 32 of 35 races.
In 2002, Toyota started racing in Formula One with Toyota Team Europe, based in Cologne, Germany. Despite a huge investment, the team's performances have been considered less than average by fans and pundits alike.
In 2004, designer Mike Gascoyne was hired to help turn things around (as he had done previously at Jordan Grand Prix and Renault F1). However, due to a lack of results and a difference in opinion with the management about how the team should progress he was released from his contract early midway through the 2006 season; by 2005, the team had advanced from the midfield to infrequently challenging for the top positions. Jarno Trulli achieved two second places and one third place in the first five races of the season, helping the team to retain second position in the Constructors Championship for several races before finishing fourth in the constructors championship. Drivers for season 2008 are Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock. Timo Glock replaces Ralph Schumacher.
In 2007, Toyota also supplyied engines to the Williams team.
Hybrids are viewed by some automakers as a core segment of the future vehicle market as consumer awareness of the need for more environmentally friendly technology increases.
Toyota Racing Development was brought about to help develop true high performance racing parts for many Toyota vehicles. TRD has often had much success with their after market tuning parts, as well as designing technology for vehicles used in all forms of racing.
Toyota is publicly traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Toyota reports on its consolidated financial statements 540 consolidated subsidiaries and 226 affiliates.
|+ Toyota Motor Corporation Accounting Ratios|
|Fiscal Year End Date||3/31/07||3/31/06||3/31/05||3/31/04||3/31/03||3/31/02|
|Receivables - Number of Days||93.8||93.3||114.2||139.0||129.6|
|Inventory - Number of Days||33.5||31.2||30.5||33.1||32.3|
|Gross Property, Plant & Equipment Turnover||1.3||1.3||1.3||1.2||1.1|
|Net Property, Plant & Equipment Turnover||3.0||3.2||3.2||2.9||2.8|
|Depreciation, Depletion & Amortization -|
|% of Gross Property, Plant & Equipment||7.6 percent||7.1 percent||7.3 percent||6.3 percent||6.1 percent|
|Depreciation, Depletion & Amortization -|
|Year to Year Change (Japanese Yen)||21,346.5||2,780.9||11,827.0||4,802.7||5,385.5|
|Depreciation, Depletion & Amortization -|
|Year to Year % Change||21.4 percent||2.9 percent||13.9 percent||6.0 percent||7.2 percent|
Toyota has long been recognized as an industry leader in manufacturing and production. Three stories of its origin have been found, one that they studied Piggly-Wiggly's just-in-time distribution system, one that they followed the writings of W. Edwards Deming, and one that they were given the principles from an Army training program. Regardless of the origin, the principles, described in Jeffrey Liker’s The Toyota Way, are as follows:
In Toyota philosophy, zeronise consists of reducing pollution, traffic deaths, and road congestion.
Toyota is supporter of Toyota Family Literacy Program along with National Center for Family Literacy, helping low-income community members for education, United Negro College Fund (40 annual scholarships), National Underground Railroad Freedom Center ($1 million), among others. Toyota created Toyota USA Foundation.
Toyota established the Toyota Technological Institute in 1981, as Sakichi Toyoda had planned to establish a university as soon as he and Toyota became successful. Toyota Technological Institute founded the Toyota Technological Institute at Chicago in 2003. Toyota is supporter of "Toyota Driving Expectations Program," "Toyota Youth for Understanding Summer Exchange Scholarship Program," "Toyota International Teacher Program," "Toyota TAPESTRY," "Toyota Community Scholars" (scholarship for high school students), "United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Internship Program," and "Toyota Funded Scholarship." It has contributed to number of local education and scholarship programs such as to University of Kentucky, Indiana.
Toyota has been developing multi-task robots designed for elderly care, manufacturing, and entertainment.
Toyota Financial Services Corporation provides financing to Toyota customers.
Toyota invests in several small start-up businesses and partnerships in biotechnology, including:
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