Filed under: LA Auto Show , Minivan/Van , Marketing/Advertising , Toyota , Design/Style Good marketing is a huge portion of making a film successful, and Toyota and Nickelodeon are going overboard to promote the upcoming SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water with this custom 2015 Sienna inspired by the cartoon character at the Los Angeles Auto Show . The exterior is decorated to look just like SpongeBob, but his maniacally smiling face on the hood and windshield might be pure, uncut nightmare fuel for a segment of the child population. The ring on the roof actually blows bubbles too, and the look gets finished off with matching blue and yellow wheels. If you get past SpongeBob’s crazed expression and take a peek inside, you find even more cartoon cues. Each of the seats is upholstered to evoke the shows stars, and all of the trim has nautical inspiration as filtered through the series’ animation style. The floor is a sandy beige, blue wood trim runs over the dashboard and sides and the roof has airbrushed clouds. Of course, it’s hard not to miss a ship’s wheel that replaces the usual steering wheel. While it’s certainly bizarre, kids might dig the bright colors, while their parents check out the Sienna. The van’s also going on a cross-country promotional tour to advertise the movie ahead of its February 6 release. Scroll down for all of the info about this cartoon car.
Filed under: LA Auto Show , Budget , Hybrid , Hatchback , Toyota Few vehicles can match the affordable fuel economy of the $19,000, 53-mile-per-gallon Toyota Prius C , and that fact isn’t likely to change for 2015, as the Japanese company has issued a moderate refresh of its sub-compact hybrid. As mid-cycle refreshes go, this is a pretty standard affair, with a larger grille and tweaked LED headlights at the front of the Prius C, and more expressive taillights at the back. Toyota made some minor changes in the cabin, updating materials throughout, but not fiddling too much with the overall level of equipment. Aside from those modest changes, this is the same fuel-efficient five-door, retaining its 1.5-liter, 73-horsepower, 82-pound-foot four-cylinder, while an electric motor tosses in an extra 26 ponies, for a total system output of 99 horsepower. Along with the 53-mpg highway rating, the C will return 46 mpg in the city. Take a look below for the full press release from Toyota, and then be sure to check out the full gallery of live images, straight from the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show. Continue reading 2015 Toyota Prius C is still colorful, still gets 53 mpg 2015 Toyota Prius C is still colorful, still gets 53 mpg originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 19 Nov 2014 18:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink
Filed under: Classics , Convertible , Performance , Japan , Videos , Toyota There’s an automotive axiom that claims it’s more fun to drive a slow car fast, than a fast car slow. If that’s the case, then pushing a Toyota Sports 800 around must be one of the most exhilarating experiences behind the wheel in the world. With just 800cc of displacement from a two-cylinder boxer engine, the focus is on finesse over outright speed. Still, it’s a fantastic page in Toyota’s performance history, and Petrolicious takes a ride with a man who owns a meticulously restored 1967 example in its latest video. The Sports 800 used the classic cost-saving strategy in the auto industry of taking parts from a standard model in the lineup and modifying it into a sports car. In this case that meant borrowing the engine from the plebian Toyota Publica, beefing it up for more power and clothing the whole thing a in beautifully shaped, wind-tunnel-honed body. The look of these lithe, targa roadsters is the exact opposite of the rather dull styling sometimes associated with Toyota today. Everywhere you look there are louvers, vents or curves to draw the eye. Check out the latest Petrolicious video for a detailed look at the history of this rare model that’s largely unknown on this side of the Pacific. Continue reading Sports 800 is a progenitor of Toyota performance Sports 800 is a progenitor of Toyota performance originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 18 Nov 2014 20:01:00 EST.
Filed under: Plants/Manufacturing , Toyota , Earnings/Financials Toyota’s decision to move its US headquarters from its longtime home in Torrance, CA, to Plano, TX, was one of the biggest stories in the automotive industry this spring. With several months since the announcement, more details about the plan have leaked out. It seems that pulling up stakes could mean an even larger shakeup in the Toyota workforce than first thought. According to Automotive News , Toyota intends to hang onto around 50 percent of its workforce in the move to the Lone Star State . However, even that figure might be optimistic. According to an unnamed insider speaking to AN, there is a fear the actual number could be closer to 30 percent. For comparison, Nissan retained about 42 percent of its workers in its move from California to Tennessee. The actual percentage making the move is a mystery because Toyota is still rewriting its job descriptions under a single set of guidelines. The changes affect benefits, bonuses and the reporting structure, according to Automotive News , and employees’ reactions could play a big role in who decides to go. According to an unnamed worker speaking to AN, the wait is hurting morale.
Filed under: LA Auto Show , Land Rover , Toyota , Ownership “Residual value is important for automakers and consumers because it’s a complete indicator of the vehicle’s future value.” – Larry Dominique Toyota and Land Rover took home the top brand honors in ALG’s 2015 Residual Value Awards, which will be presented this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show . Toyota won in the mainstream brand category, while Land Rover was honored in the luxury segment. In addition to brands, ALG recognized vehicles in individual segments, and notable winners included the Mazda3 for compact car, Subaru Legacy for midsize car and Dodge Charger for fullsize car. The Subaru WRX won in the sportscar category, while the Toyota Tundra earned top honors in the fullsize truck segment. “Residual value is important for automakers and consumers because it’s a complete indicator of the vehicle’s future value, accounting for quality, durability and brand desirability, among other factors,” said Larry Dominique, president of ALG and executive vice president of ALG-parent, TrueCar . “The award recipients demonstrate strong forecasted returns on investments for their owners.” There were eight first-time winners this year, including the Charger, WRX, Toyota Prius V and Audi TT . Toyota had the most model winners with six. ALG passed out 26 awards – two for brands and 24 for models – based on vehicles that are expected to retain the best percentage of their MSRP after three years. This was the 15th iteration of the awards, which are given out annually, and you’re welcome to read more in the press release below . Continue reading Land Rover, Toyota big winners in ALG top resale value awards Land Rover, Toyota big winners in ALG top resale value awards originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 18 Nov 2014 11:33:00 EST.
TORRANCE, Calif., November 18, 2014 — The 2015 Tundra TRD Pro Desert Race Truck not only raced for over 1,200 miles to a first place finish at the 47 th Tecate SCORE Baja 1000 , it was also driven an additional 1,000 miles back to the start line of the race.
Filed under: Toyota , Electric The Toyota Mirai is coming to California next year and it will arrive bearing a $57,500 MSRP. Toyota says that with state and federal incentives worth a total of $13,000, interested customers will be able to buy a Mirai for under $45,000. If you’re more into leasing, then you can get the Mirai for $499 a month for 36 months (with $3,649 due at signing). Both options come with free hydrogen fuel for “up to three years.” The 2016 Mirai will be available in California in the fall of 2015 in a very limited supply – less than 200 vehicles in the fourth quarter – but as availability expands to the Northeast ( read: Boston and New York ), Toyota says it expects more than 3,000 to be on the road by the end of 2017. But there might be a catch. The $8,000 federal tax credit isn’t scheduled to last much longer. In fact, it could expire well before the Mirai is released. The current regulations say that , “The purchaser may claim a credit for the certified amount for a fuel cell vehicle if it is placed in service by the taxpayer after Dec. 31, 2005, and is purchased on or before Dec. 31, 2014.” That’s just a month and a half from now, while the car is almost a year away.
Filed under: Motorsports , Truck , Videos , Toyota , Celebrities , Off-Road , Racing , Autoblog Black Jay Leno takes a step outside of his cavernous garage for this latest video for a jaunt into the desert to get a little dirty. He meets up with off-road racing legend Ivan ‘Ironman’ Stewart , who has multiple Baja 500 and 1000 wins in his motorsports career, to play with a Toyota Tundra in the sand. Unfortunately, Leno doesn’t get to interview Stewart too deeply about his long history in racing, but Ironman does talk a little bit about reading the trail while speeding through the desert. In lieu of a great conversation, there is a ton of high-quality footage of the Toyota bounding through the desert. This clip feels more like a marketing effort than the usual output from Jay Leno’s Garage , but it’s still great to see Stewart behind the wheel sliding a truck, just like old times. The two of them even take the truck on a somewhat humorous journey at the end of the video. Continue reading Jay Leno goes offroading with the legendary Ivan ‘Ironman’ Stewart Jay Leno goes offroading with the legendary Ivan ‘Ironman’ Stewart originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 17 Nov 2014 20:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink
TORRANCE, Calif., (Nov. 17, 2014) – For the second time in a generation, Toyota has re-imagined the future of mobility.
NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., (Nov. 17, 2014) –