Filed under: Car Buying , Hybrid , Marketing/Advertising , Toyota , TV/Movies ” But wait, there’s more! ” You may be accustomed to hearing that line during an infomercial for a steak knife sharpener, but what about when the talking head is pitching a brand new car? Toyota is doing just that in a new partnership with HSN . The result of this partnership is a show called “Discover Toyota,” which first aired on Sunday, October 7. HSN has been around for more than three decades, and Toyota is the first automaker to appear on the network. The aim of the show is to highlight Toyota’s hybrid lineup, including the Camry Hybrid, Highlander Hybrid, all-new Avalon Hybrid, and of course, the Prius family. According to Toyota Motor Sales VP of Marketing Communications and Motorsports Ed Laukes, “HSN has a really loyal and engaged base of viewers, so it was a natural partner to help us expose out growing lineup of hybrids to people across the country.” Appearing on the show were Micah Muzio of KBB.com and Tara Weingarten of Vroomgirls.com. The two appeared as the program’s auto experts – one must carefully consider the objectivity of any subject matter expert brought on to a program this is so clearly backed by Toyota, however. The show apparently also featured quizzes and Toyota-themed games, allowing fans to earn point towards sweepstakes to win a new Avalon Hybrid. Do you think this is a smart move for an automaker? Is Toyota targeting the Avalon’s target demographic with the HSN program?
Filed under: Hybrid , Europe , Paris Motor Show , Hatchback , Toyota Toyota may have given us the full spec-sheet on its revised Auris before the car made its official Parisian debut, but our first live look at the next-generation wagon nevertheless proves compelling. The longer, lower five-door looks the part of a better-handling hatchback – just the role that Toyota hopes the hybrid can play in the European market. The Hybrid seen here is the second-generation gas-electric Auris, and it will be the top-level powertrain option for European buyers. Toyota expects that a full one-third of Auris buyers will select that Hybrid Synergy Drive model – the other two-thirds of buyers are expected to be evenly split between the diesel- and gasoline-powered versions of the car. Have a closer look at the handsome 2013 Toyota Auris in our live gallery and scroll below for the official word from Toyota in both video and press release forms. Continue reading 2013 Toyota Auris Hybrid is sharper and sleeker in new form [w/video] 2013 Toyota Auris Hybrid is sharper and sleeker in new form [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 27 Sep 2012 21:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink
Filed under: Budget , Hybrid , Paris Motor Show , Hatchback , Toyota , Diesel The Toyota Auris has been comprehensively reworked, now only awaiting its Paris Motor Show debut. It’s still a small package, but it’s got a big burden: Toyota says it represents a “determination to engineer cars that are more appealing and dynamically engaging to drive while building on its long-established reputation for quality, durability and reliability.” In the appealing corner, the front and back have been sharpened, the stylistic tweaks making for an especially cutting schnoz that helps the new Auris achieve a coefficient of drag of 0.28. The whole car has been lengthened by 30 millimeters (about 1.2 inches) and lowered by 55 millimeters (about 2.2 inches); it’s stance is lower than any other “mainstream C-segment” offering, according to the company. More practically, the roof gets Skyview – a huge panorama glass roof and the tailgate gets a wider opening. Inside, the cabin gets upgraded appointments everywhere: soft-textured door grips, padded armrests on the doors, fabric-trimmed pillars, satin silver finishes, leather trimming on the dash on some models, a soft-touch covering on the IP’s upper surface and baseball-stitched nappa leather around the steering wheel. There’s also more space due to the new packaging, with rear passengers getting 20 mm more knee room and the boot getting 90 mm more load space – all hatchback models, including the hybrid, boast 360 liters of cargo room (12.7 cubic feet). Dynamically, that lower stance should be of some assistance, and the use of high-tensile steel increases stiffness, lowers the hatchback’s center of gravity and cuts weight by up to 88 pounds. The steering and suspension have also received unnamed revisions to make for a better drive. In addition to the top-flight Hybrid Synergy Drive model, powerplants on offer will be 1.3-liter and 1.6-liter gasoline engines and a 1.4-liter diesel. If you’d like even more facts and figures on the 2013 Auris, you’ll find them in the press release below .
Filed under: Motorsports , Toyota , Racing The Toyota TS030 Hybrid made its Le Mans debut this past weekend during the event’s single day test session on Sunday, marking the first time a Toyota prototype has run at Cirque De La Sarthe since the GT-One, codenamed TS020, competed at the 24 hour race in ’98 and ’99. It was no surprise that Audi ran the fastest times during the two practice sessions – the pair of Audi R18 E-Tron Quattros nabbed the top spots – but there is little doubt that Toyota considers their results to be positive. After all, success in racing, particularly for a brand-new car at Le Mans, can be defined in a variety of ways. The quickest TS030 Hybrid ran just a little over a second behind the top Audi (3:27.204 vs 3:25.927), a time that is more than competitive. “We are continuously adjusting and improving the system, so each test day brings a step forward and that was true again today,” said Hisatake Murata, the team’s project leader. You can see the Toyota TS030 Hybrid in action at Le Mans in the gallery above, or scroll down below to read the official announcement from Toyota Motorsport GmbH. Continue reading Toyota TS030 Hybrid makes successful Le Mans debut during test day Toyota TS030 Hybrid makes successful Le Mans debut during test day originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 08 Jun 2012 19:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink
Filed under: Hybrid , Minivan/Van , Wagon , Europe , Hatchback , Ford , Toyota , Electric Ford dealers have started taking orders for the 2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid , the company announced today. The gas-electric hybrid will arrive later this year with a starting price of $25,995, undercutting its most direct competitor, the Toyota Prius V hybrid, which has a base price of $26,550. “C-Max Hybrid offers better fuel economy, performance, technology and functionality than Prius V – and C-Max Hybrid customers will pay less at the dealership and at the pump,” said Ken Czubay, vice president, U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service, in a press release. More importantly, Ford will provide some stiffer competition for Toyota , which has ruled the hybrid market, selling 77 percent of all hybrids in the U.S. this April. The C-Max will only be offered in the U.S. as a hybrid, similar to Toyota’s Prius strategy. There will also be an all-electric version, known as the C-Max Energi , that arrives this fall. Ford sells the C-Max, which is built on Ford’s compact car platform, in Europe as a gas powered model.
Filed under: Coupe , Hybrid , Performance , Toyota , Rumormill Motor Trend reports Toyota may have plans to resurrect the Supra name, or at least a new sports coupe to fill the role of the long-dead two door. Hot on the heels of sports cars like the Lexus LFA and Scion FR-S , designers are reportedly working on dusting off the 2007 FT-HS Concept for another go at life. Paired with the company’s GRMN MRS prototype chassis, the vehicle will likely deliver up to 400 horsepower from a 3.5-liter V6 engine and an electric motor. If the notion of a hybrid Supra is enough to ruffle your feathers, you may want to stop reading right now. Unlike the previous sports coupe, the new model will make use of an all-wheel-drive system. Still reading? MT reports the machine will put power to all four wheels via a CVT pulled from the Lexus RX . That noise? It’s the sound of a lonely sad trombone echoing down the halls of the internet. Of course, all of this seems to be little more than a few educated guesses stuck together.
TMS Group Vice President and Lexus Division General Manager Mark Templin reveals the 2013 Lexus ES and ES Hybrid at the New York International Auto Show, April 4, 2012.
Filed under: Car Buying , Hybrid , Etc. , Toyota How much do hybrid drivers really, truly like their cars? According to R.L. Polk, not all that much – at least not in 2011. Polk has released a new hybrid loyalty analysis that concludes that only 35 percent of people who bought a hybrid bought another one last year. The data comes from car purchases made in 2011, and Polk found that Toyota Prius drivers are the most loyal, both to the gas-electric technology and to Toyota itself. Sixty percent of Toyota hybrid owners bought another vehicle from the automaker, even if it wasn’t a hybrid. A recent J.D. Power Customer Retention Study found that the average brand loyalty was 49 percent, but that doesn’t take powertrains into account. According to Polk, forty-one percent of Toyota hybrid drivers choose to buy another hybrid (from any brand).
Filed under: Hybrid , Geneva Motor Show , Europe , Technology , Hatchback , Toyota Toyota has unveiled the 2012 Yaris Hybrid at the Geneva Motor Show – the first B-segment hybrid in Europe. While the vehicle makes use of a 74-horsepower 1.5-liter gasoline engine, engineers mated the internal combustion mill with a more compact 80-hp electric motor along with a smaller inverter and battery pack. Combined, the two can crank out up to 100 combined horsepower. Toyota says the Atkinson-cycle engine and it’s associated techno wizardry is 20 percent lighter than the standard 1.8-liter hybrid drivetrain found in most of the company’s hybrid offerings. Speaking of batteries, the Yaris Hybrid stores its power via a nickel-metal hydride pack. With fewer cells than those found in the Auris Hybrid , the batteries are around 20 percent lighter. The drivetrain will net buyers a fuel consumption rating of just 3.5 liters per 100 kilometers, or around 67 mpg on the European scale. Click past the break for the full press release. Continue reading 2012 Toyota Yaris Hybrid plays big brother to the Prius C 2012 Toyota Yaris Hybrid plays big brother to the Prius C originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 07 Mar 2012 16:40:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds .
Filed under: Government/Legal , Technology , Hyundai , Kia , Toyota With all the news coming out recently about the small claims lawsuit over the Honda Civic Hybrid , readers may have forgotten the name behind a long-running legal issue over Toyota’s hybrid system: Paice . The latest development is that Paice and the Abell Foundation (an investor in Paice) have sued Hyundai and Kia over the gas-electric technology used in the Optima and Sonata hybrids (pictured), which shares some parts with Paice says infringes its patents, just as it says Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive does. Read up on the details of Alex Severinsky’s story here . According to Automotive News , Paice claims that Hyundai and Kia should have known that Toyota was dealing with legal issues – especially since Paice has been contacting Hyundai about the issue – and says that the Korean automakers are infringing upon three patents that Paice owns. Toyota and Paice settled their long-looming hybrid patent infringement case in 2010 after eight years, during which time the courts routinely rejected Toyota’s request to dismiss the case. Toyota eventually paid royalties to Paice for the Prius , Highlander Hybrid and Lexus RX400h models it sold. Paice drags Hyundai, Kia into long-running hybrid patent fight with Toyota originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 21 Feb 2012 10:02:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink