Toyota and Food Banks Work Together to Serve More People


Toyota in West Virginia and New York have used manufacturing processes to help non-profits better serve their communities.

This holiday season, Toyota and food banks worked together to serve even more people in need. Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia (TMMWV) shared some valuable best practices from its manufacturing processes to help the Facing Hunger Food Bank in Huntington, West Virginia be more productive.

With this collaboration, the food bank’s backpack program, which provides food to young people, became 600% more efficient. In addition, Toyota was able to help the food bank increase its warehouse storage by two-thirds.

“Better serving the community was the ultimate goal,” says Charles Jarrell, TMMWV training and development specialist. “More than that, it was incredibly rewarding to watch the food bank staff learn, grow and challenge their assumptions about how best to serve the community. This just goes to show the things we do every day at the plant can be applied anywhere and make a dramatic impact.”

This isn’t the first time Toyota has shared its manufacturing knowledge to help non-profit groups. In 2013, after Hurricane Sandy, Toyota helped Food Bank for New York City cut down on wait times for meals and helped a food warehouse pack and distribute meals more efficiently to those affected by the storm.

We at Dick Dyer Toyota are proud to be part of a company that not only provides monetary assistance to charities, but helps give them the tools they need to serve even more people.

Did Someone Really Put a Ferrari Engine in a Toyota 86?

The Toyota 86, also known as the Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ, has always been a small sports car that a massive amount of drivers could afford. While it usually boasts around 200 horsepower, that isn’t enough for some drivers. Take Ryan Tuerck for example. The professional drifting driver felt the Toyota 86 needed more power and he did something about it.

Tuerck took to the garage and got his hands on a Ferrari engine. The Ferrari F136 V8 engine currently powers the Ferrari 458 Speciale and is the recipient to a whole host of engine-oriented awards. Producing 597 horsepower, it’s a force to be reckoned with.

While the video doesn’t specifically show what model he’s working with, there’s little doubt that it initially topped out at less than 250 horsepower. By adding nearly 300 additional ponies, Tuerck is taking the small sports car to a new level. Take a good look because it’s not often you see a Ferrari-powered Toyota 86.

Ferrari supercars come stocked with electronic safety systems that prevent too much power hitting the rear wheels. The modified car more than likely doesn’t have any of that technology. However, given Tuerck’s reputation in drifting, he probably doesn’t need it. Keep in mind this driver tore through an abandoned Hawthorne mall in a Nissan equipped with more than 1,000 horsepower.

Here at Dick Dyer Toyota, we can’t wait to see the modified Toyota 86 in action!

Toyota Connected Will Free You from the ‘Tyranny of Technology’

Toyota Connected

Not only is everyone different with their particular tastes and preferences, but our destinations and plans change all of the time, so there’s no better place that we could stand to have more precise technology than inside our vehicles.

Toyota has teamed up with Microsoft to make car technology more precise for the individual. The project is known as Toyota Connected.

The new CEO of Toyota Connected, Zack Hicks, told USA Today how this collaboration between Toyota and Microsoft is ultimately designed to “help free our customers from the tyranny of technology. It will make lives easier and help us to return to our humanity.”

Hicks statement goes to the heart of one of the problems with the growing ubiquity of technology in our lives. Technology is powerful and highly capable of enhancing our lives, but a lot of times, we are overwhelmed by it. We have to work too hard to ensure it’s giving us exactly what we want, and doing so disengages us from life outside of technology.

Toyota Connected will do a better job of learning a person’s preferences. It will do a better job of being aware of the situation and fine-tuning what is offered. For example, you may tell the service you are hungry. The technology already knows your route and what restaurants you like, saving you a lot of time and allowing you to stay focused on other things.

Tell us what you think of the new Toyota Connected car technology.

Toyota’s J.D. Power Dependability Rankings

The J.D. Power Dependability Ranking scores are in and Toyota’s done extremely well. Lexus, Toyota’s luxury brand, took the top spot in overall annual vehicle dependability. That’s a good sign for Toyota customers as luxury features trickle down to the mainstream Toyota brand over time. To determine the rankings, J.D. Power researchers surveyed 33,560 owners of 2013 model year vehicles.

Entertainment technology was the main source of complaints across all brands. The main perpetrators were wireless connections between smartphones and vehicles and voice-recognition software. More recently, many automakers have turned to Android Auto and Apple CarPlay to solve the recurring issues in newer models.

Technology-related comments weren’t all bad though.

“The technologies people were most satisfied with were collision-avoidance features such as lane-departure alerts or blind-spot monitoring,” said Renee Stephens, J.D. Power vice president of US automotive.

Toyota and Lexus took a combined top six spots in the highest ranking vehicles in their segments. Lexus took compact premium car, midsize premium car, and midsize premium SUV.

Toyota matched the luxury brand, taking three categories as well. The Toyota Tundra grabbed large light-duty pickup honor, while the Prius v nabbed compact MPV. The Toyota Sienna was also named the most dependable minivan.

We here at Dick Dyer Toyota are proud of Toyota results in the J.D. Power Dependability Rankings.

Toyota Buys Daihatsu Compact Car Division

Daihatsu has been a division of Toyota that focused on the compact segment since 1988, when Toyota owned 51 percent of the company and brought it under the brand’s umbrella. Since then, Daihatsu has mostly stayed out of the US, but contributed to the American car market by building some Scion cars, such as the recognizably unique Scion xB. However, Toyota recently purchased the rest of the company in order to focus on Daihatsu compact cars and bring smaller cars to the forefront of its brand.

It is exactly this sort of strategy that has kept the Toyota name as the number one best-selling global brand spot for the past five years. Not content to sit by, enjoy its success, and allow the other competing auto makers to catch up, Toyota took a look at its figures and discovered that minicars are the brand’s weakest lineup in terms of sales. In order to patch up that blight on its sales statistics, Toyota decided to purchase Daihatsu in order to bring the expertise and skills of a company experienced in the production of compact cars into its brand.

The arrangement means we’ll be seeing more Daihatsu compact cars on the market, as well as vehicles that the smaller brand name has made for both its parent company and, perhaps, for Scion’s lineup. Toyota will be bringing more competition to the compact segment following the integration of Daihatsu into the company.

Toyota Global Sales Remain Number One Best-Selling

Toyota global sales

Toyota has been a powerhouse in the international automobile industry for a long time, but over the past five years, the brand has seen a continuous stream of success. Toyota global sales were unveiled during January, making it clear that for the fifth year in a row, the brand has topped the list of best-selling automotive brands in the world.

If five years in a row isn’t impressive enough, Toyota only lost its chance at a nine-year streak in 2011, after it gave up the number one spot to General Motors following the earthquake that struck Japan. Before that, Toyota was the reigning champion throughout 2008, 2009, and 2010. Toyota and GM vehicles, as well as products from Volkswagen, make up about a third of all vehicles sold on Earth combined.

Toyota also has plans for strengthening its hold on the throne even longer. The brand just bought the remaining share of its subsidiary Daihatsu and is in talks with Suzuki to collaborate in India, a market that has long been dominated by Suzuki. There is no word yet on whether partnership negotiations have begun, but Toyota is considering the strategy.

Overall, Toyota global sales statistics say the company sold a grand total of 10.15 million vehicles over the course of 2015, besting VW’s reported total of 9.9 million and GM’s 9.8 million by a significant margin.

Toyota Mapping System Will Gather Real-Time Road Data

Toyota Mapping System

Digital mapping has been available on the internet and mobile devices for years, but there’s always progress that can be made in the field, even if it’s from an unexpected contributor.

Toyota plans to unveil a “high-precision” mapping system at the upcoming Consumer Electronic Show, one that will use digital cameras and GPS units already in Toyota cars today. Data gathered by cars through this method will be used to create a detailed digital map.

What good is another digital map database? This Toyota mapping system won’t be intended for human drivers but for the navigation of self-driving cars, which need continually updated street charts. Autonomous vehicles can then store and share information with other vehicles, based on real-time observations.

So far, the crowd-sourced technology is only being used to map roadways, but adapting it in the future would not be difficult.

We at Dick Dyer Toyota are continually amazed at the ideas provided by Toyota. Clearly this is why Toyota remains a leading innovator in the auto industry.

Toyota Recognized as a Leader of Diversity at National Urban League Equal Opportunity Dinner

Toyota Recognized as a Leader of Diversity

The 59th annual National Urban League Equal Opportunity Dinner took place late last month, honoring an array of organizations, individuals, and corporations who have contributed to equality and diversity. Toyota was among the winners because of its place “at the forefront of empowering underserved communities and its dedication to corporate diversity.”

Jim Colon, the vice president of African American Business Strategy at Toyota, spoke on behalf of the company and its employees, saying “it’s truly an honor to receive the Corporate Leadership Award,” and that “the National Urban League is one of Toyota’s most valued and long-standing partners.”

Toyota has a long history of championing diversity and equal opportunity. In 2015, it was the only automaker named to Diversity Inc’s Top-50 list, which chooses the 50 American companies that show the highest dedication to improving the plight of the underprivileged and encouraging the growth of diversity and multiculturalism based on employment records, recruiting methods, outreach, and leadership.

Toyota is the most popular brand of choice for many minority groups in the US including the African American, Asian, and Latino communities, and the company has always sought to reach people of color through its advertising and philanthropy.

Toyota Teams up with the Cast of Back to the Future

Last month, we finally reached the prophetic date of October 21, 2015 that appears in Back to the Future Part II. While we may not have hoverboards to travel around upon, we do have some advanced technology that would impress the Doc.

According to a Toyota press release, Toyota has teamed up with the cast of Back to the Future.

Both Hollywood superstars that made the film a success, Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd, appeared in a series of promotional spots for Toyota.

The advertisements focused in on the brand new Toyota Mirai, which represents the future of Toyota with its advanced hydrogen-based fuel system.

“This Back to the Future-inspired milestone has taken 30 years to arrive, and Toyota has been developing hydrogen fuel cell technology almost that long,” said Bill Fay, Toyota division group vice president and general manager.  “There’s no better way to generate excitement for a turning point in automotive history than with a film that celebrated the possibilities of the future.”

Perhaps they should trade out the DeLorean for a Toyota Mirai! Ready for your own Back to the Future adventure with Toyota? Check out our inventory of cars that are out of this world!

New Toyota Diesel Engines Ready to Power Next Generation

Toyota, creator of fuel-efficient vehicles such as the Prius family, Camry, and many others, recently revealed two new diesel engines that will power the next generation of Toyota vehicles. The two new engines are both direct-injection turbo diesel set-ups; one is a 2.8-liter engine, while the other is a 2.4-liter engine.

The engines are special because they are more than just the next-generation of diesel engines; they are also the first use of Thermo Swing Wall Insulation Technology (TSWIN), not just by Toyota, but by any automaker in the entire world. This new technology should make Toyota’s new vehicles up to 15% more efficient and increase the torque available in cars powered by these engines by up to 25%.

The new Toyota diesel engines, called the GD family engines, will replace the KD engine family, which currently consists of 3.0-liter and 2.5-liter diesel engines. Toyota will launch these new engines in up to 150 markets around the world by 2020, but they will make 700,000 of the new efficiency machines as early as 2016. Come see us here at Dick Dyer Toyota to learn more about these new engines and the rest of our lineup today!