Items tagged with toyota

Google is engrossed with self-driving cars and Apple has reportedly assembled a super team of engineers to build an electric vehicle to take on Tesla. Whether or not either venture makes it into the mainstream is something we won't know for at least several more years, but in the meantime, both companies are also jockeying for dominance in the in-car dash market. As in-car electronics become more sophisticated and connected with our mobile devices, there's definitely a growing market for platforms like Google's Android Auto and Apple's CarPlay. And as each company makes its respective pitch, expect... Read more...
After years of working on prototype vehicles, multiple car companies have announced a major push for hydrogen fuel cell automobiles. At the LA Auto Show last week, Toyota showed off its Mirai, a four-door passenger sedan with a $57,500 base sticker price and a hydrogen-only fuel system. Honda recently delayed its hydrogen-powered FCX Clarity Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle until 2016, while Hyundai is planning to build 1000 fuel-cell powered Tucson's by the end of the year. Currently, most proposed hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are actually combined hydrogen-electric designs. Hydrogen gas, under enormous... Read more...
While Tesla is making waves with its all-electric fleet of cars, Toyota is exploring a non-fossil fuel alternative vehicle as well. The company announced that it will release a hydrogen fuel cell sedan next year, coming to Japan by April and in the U.S. and Europe sometime next summer. Why hydrogen? “Hydrogen is a particularly promising alternative fuel since it can be produced using a wide variety of primary energy sources, including solar and wind power,” reads a Toyota press release. “When compressed, it has a higher energy density than batteries and is easier to store and... Read more...
Tesla has had an interesting week. First, the company talked about a political move in Missouri that would effectively prevent the company from selling its electric cars in the state, then in a quarterly filing, Tesla revealed that it will no longer supply batteries to Toyota for the latter’s RAV4 EVs. To the first issue, the Tesla team penned a blog post describing the political theater that’s going on around sales in Missouri. “We have just become aware of a last-minute attempt by the auto dealers lobby, via pressure on legislators, to bar Tesla from selling its vehicles direct... Read more...
Automobiles are changing at a faster rate than ever before, particularly in the technology space. Historically, motorcars have evolved fairly slowly compared to the rapid pace of technological change, but now that technology is becoming an integral part of cars, the whole experience is hastening. Just look at Toyota's newest car -- the 2013 Avalon Limited will soon become the first car on Earth to offer Qi wireless charging right from the factory. A limited number of phones and cases support the Qi wireless charging standard, but it's applications like this that will surely spur growth. It's things... Read more...
Cars have already learned how to drive themselves courtesy of Google, and now Toyota is testing a technology that will allow automobiles to communicate with one another. Does anyone else see this as a possible premise for a sci-fi movie, one in which tons of steel and metal rise up against mankind? Perhaps Michael Bay can direct the flick. Lest we get carried away, Toyota isn't grooming vehicles into becoming sentient beings. The idea is to make driving safer by outfitting vehicles with sensors that allow them to send and receive data to transmitters installed on streets, using that information... Read more...
While we’re dreaming about science fiction, Toyota Motor Corporation announced that it has developed a human support robot (HSR) that is capable of not just picking up odds and ends around the house but can also actually perform tasks normally performed by human caregivers--that is to say, tasks that require the robot to actually touch people and help them with routine daily activities. The announcement doesn’t get specific, but looking at the robot, one imagines that it could help people get in and out of chairs, retrieve objects just out of reach (a serious problem for someone who... Read more...
We've known that technology and automobiles have been growing closer for some time now, and Toyota is clearly riding that bandwagon for as long as it's going. The company just announced a new cloud computing initiative with Salesforce.com that will result in a new social network service, enabling owners to become "friends" with their cars, and receive heads-up reminders (similar to tweets) for maintenance reminders. Granted, Chevy's OnStar system could already do something similar, but the more the merrier! The deal will mean that Japan gets it first, with electric cars being the first to integrate... Read more...
And the automotive hits just keep on coming. As technology finds its way deeper and deeper into the automotive realm, it's becoming harder and harder to ignore. The fact of the matter is that technology is now an integral part of the automotive space, and even low-end vehicles have some level of technological integration to make 'em stand out. Microsoft's SYNC system has already taken Ford by storm, while Chevy has an expanding OnStar system. So what about Toyota? Turn to Microsoft, of course! The companies this week announced that they'd be pouring around $12 million into Toyota Media Service... Read more...
This will sound outlandish, but any veteran driver of a Prius, or at least one who's worked hard to get decent mileage out of the hybrid, will tell you it's not. Toyota wants you to drive with a glass of water on your dash; it'll improve your MPG. Actually, Toyota wants you to drive as though you had a glass of water on your dash. The company has even launched a site called "A Glass of Water." Those who have driven a Prius, and gotten good at the "video game" display in the center dash display, which is designed to help you maximize your MPG, will realize the truth in this. It's the gentle, steady... Read more...
The Prius is not listed among the models that Toyota recently recalled (and temporarily stopped selling) for sticking accelerator pedals, but according to Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, it has its own acceleration problem. At the same time, on Wednesday, reports of Prius brake problems on that same model year emerged.Steve Wozniak was speaking at the Discovery Forum 2010 when went off on a sidebar and began discussing his Prius' problems. Wozniak is a big fan of Toyota's hybrid, and has several. It's even appeared on camera when he was guesting on Kathy Griffin's "My Life on the D-List" as her... Read more...
Electric vehicles sound fantastic in theory, but there's still the issue of charging the vehicles. Energy, even the kind not found in traditional fuel pumps, requires fossil fuels or a green alternative to make, and burning loads of coal in place of petrol doesn't exactly sound like a great compromise. Toyota seems to agree, with the automotive giant recently announcing that it had developed a solar charging station for plug-in hybrid automobiles and purely electric cars. Essentially, this kind of charging solution really would enable an electric vehicle to cause a serious impact for good; not... Read more...
Many have modified their Priuses, and one of those possible modifications is a rooftop solar panel system.  It seems that Toyota is considering the same as standard equipment for its own models, but only for high-end models, and only to power the AC. Toyota Motor Corp plans to install solar panels on some Prius hybrids in its next remodelling, responding to growing demand for "green" cars amid record-high oil prices, a source briefed on the matter said on Monday. The panels, supplied by Kyocera Corp would be able to power part of the air-conditioning on high-end versions of the gasoline-electric... Read more...