Tag Archive | "Toyota"

Toyota Pickup Tows Space Shuttle Endeavour

Toyota Pickup Tows Space Shuttle Endeavour

On the 12th October 2012 a standard half-ton Toyota Tundra pickup towed the 145-ton Space Shuttle Endeavour across LA’s 405 freeway on its way to the California Science Centre.

The Toyota Tundra in question is the Crewmax 4×4 which is powered by a iForce 5.4L V8 engine with 284kW on tap.

This reminds me of the Volkswagen Touareg 5.0L V10 TDI (230kW) which towed a 155-ton Boeing 747 back in 2007. You can also watch that video below.

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Toyota 86 TV Commercials

Toyota 86 TV Commercials

Over the last few weeks I have watched a number of different Toyota 86 TV commercials from around the world, namely Australia, the UK, SOuth Africa and the united States. Below are some of those commercials.

The South African TV commercial for the Toyota 86 was made at the Rock Raceway and the driving for the commercial was by none other than the owner of the Rock Raceway, Tim Stephens , well that is except the intro screen shot.

I have to confess i can’t get enough of this car.





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Barrel Drifting and the Toyota 86

Barrel Drifting and the Toyota 86

It seems members of the drifting fraternity have fallen in love with the Toyota 86 since its introduction.

To demonstrate the abilities of the Toyota 86, Toyota UK brought in Japanese “Drift King” and Racing Driver Keiichi Tsuchiya. Tsuchiya started his racing career in 1977 and before retiring had raced in the Le Mans, the Japanese Touring Car Championship, and the Japanese Formula Three Championship. However he is widely known internationally for his drifting antics.

The express purpose of Keiichi Tsuchiya was to challenge journalists to have a go at beating Tsuchiya’s time on a Barrel Drifting course. Barrel drifting is relatively new and has yet to catch on o wide scale. Similar to Barrel Racing in the horse racing community it involves making a series of sharp turns or drifts round three barrels in a course approximately 120 to 125 metres long and less than 20 metres wide, this according to Steve Sutcliffe of Autocar.

We wonder if this sport will catch on internationally and most importantly in South Africa. The Toyota 86 is a rear wheel drive coupe which was built in collaboration with Subaru. It is sold in South Africa for a recommended retail price of R298500. For more information on the Toyota 86 read our article.

Have a look at the video below for the review from Autocar.

Source: Autocar 

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The All New Toyota Yaris HSD

The All New Toyota Yaris HSD

The Toyota Yaris HSD  (Hybrid Synergy Drive)  is the third Toyota hybrid to be introduced into the South African market following the successful introduction of the Toyota Prius and the Toyota Auris Hybrid. The Yaris HSD will be built by Toyota Motor Manufacturing France (TMMF).

According to Toyota, the introduction of the Toyota Yaris HSD is a first for the B segment, in that the full hybrid technology offers Yaris HSD customers outstanding value for money through an unparalleled combination of competitive price, low maintenance and running costs, and Toyota’s traditional high residual values. This according to Toyota is especially true when comparing the Yaris Hybrid to other diesel powered vehicles in the B segment.

The effective packaging of the HSD propulsion system on the Toyota Yaris allows for an extremely efficient use of space, without detriment to performance, passenger accommodation and load space.

The downsized full hybrid system combines a 1.5 litre 16-valve DOHC Atkinson Cycle petrol engine unit with a lighter, more compact electric motor, transaxle, inverter and battery pack. The total system weight is 201 kg, 20% (42 kg) less than that of an Auris Hybrid.

Combining the power of a 55 kW petrol engine and battery powering the electrical motor, the Yaris HSD’s highly efficient powertrain generates a maximum 74 kW system output. It offers the best balance of performance and fuel consumption/CO2 emissions in the B segment.

The Yaris HSD will accelerate seamlessly from 0-100 km/h in 11.8 seconds, and on to a maximum speed of 165 km/h. Conversely, it delivers an average fuel consumption of just 3.8 l/100 km and segment-best CO2 emissions of only 88 g/km.

Toyota claims the exceptional fuel efficiency of the Toyota Yaris HSD provides a driving range potential of close to 1,000 km on a single tank of fuel.

Other than improvements on the powertrain system, the battery pack has also been downsized. The battery pack features a 144V nickel-metal hydride battery with a more efficient vehicle electric power management system. The number of cells has been reduced from the 168 of the current, Auris Hybrid battery to only 120, composed of 20 modules connected in series. This effects a decrease in volume of 20% and a weight saving of 11 kg, allowing for the installation of the new battery entirely under the rear passenger seats, with no intrusion into the cargo load space.

The Yaris HSD differentiates itself from it Yaris siblings by means of an exclusive, aerodynamically-efficient exterior design which instantly identifies it as the flagship of the Yaris model range.  The main exterior styling differences being the revised front bumper design sized to optimise powertrain cooling, the projector-type headlamp unit which features standard chrome-plated ‘eyebrows’ lipped with an LED ‘lightguide’, and LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL), whilst at the rear the LED-type high mounted stop light, and clear lens combination lights incorporate a LED tail and stop lamp signature unique to the new Yaris HSD.

A number of other change have also been incorporated to help bring down the drag coefficient to 0.286 compared to a normal Toyota Yaris which has a drag coefficient of 0.287. We have to say that it seems like an awful lot of trouble to go through to reduce the drag coefficient by 0.001.

The Yaris HSD is available in two trim grades – mid-spec XS and high-grade XR – both of which feature a generous list of standard kit. The only external differentiators between the two being the inclusion of front fog lights, privacy glass for the rear side windows and a rear spoiler for the flagship XR model.

 On the safety front, the 5-star EuroNCAP rated Yaris gets ABS (with EBD and BAS) as well as Vehicle Stability Control (VSC). In XS guise, the Yaris comes standard with four airbags (driver, passenger and side airbag system) while the XR grade gets a total of seven thanks to the additional curtain shield and driver knee airbags

In the interior, the Toyota Yaris HSD benefits from a driver-focused cockpit with hybrid-exclusive details and trim finishes. Silver ring-trimmed, three dimensional instrument dials incorporate a hybrid system indicator and feature a combination of white and blue backlighting. The centre console-mounted “Toyota Touch” system incorporates a hybrid energy monitor illuminated in blue as well as the dual zone air-conditioning. The Toyota Touch system incorporates a Hybrid Energy Monitor which displays the real-time energy flow within the Hybrid Synergy Drive system. Vehicle information displays include remaining fuel range, instant fuel consumption, average fuel consumption per minute over the last 15 minutes, time elapsed since last engine start as well as a record of past consumption results.

Other features on the Toyota Yaris HSD include; Electronic Brakeforce distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist, Traction Control (TRC) and Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), as well as an Electronically Controlled Braking (ECB) system which coordinates the control of both hydraulic and regenerative braking. Coordinated control of the hydraulic and regenerative braking systems maximises the regeneration of energy by the electric motor during deceleration and under braking.

The recommended retail price for the Yaris HSD XS is R223 800 (incl. VAT) whilst that of the Yaris HSD VR is R245 900 (incl. VAT).

View the video below on the Yaris Hybrid powertain.

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Most Detailed Toyota GT 86 Review to date

Most Detailed Toyota GT 86 Review to date


I’m sure by now you have seen a number of reviews of the Toyota GT 86 (or Toyota 86, or Scion FR-S) on the web by now.

In this video Nino Karotta in his wolverine type voice drives from Barcelona to Budapest in the Toyota GT-86 through some exceptional roads such as the winding hills of France to the high speed Autobhan and finally to a race track in Hungary where he pits the Toyota GT 86 against a Toyota AE86.

Warning: The video is long and may have significant effect on your data usage but it’s worth it.


Source: Autoblog

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Price for Toyota 86 Announced

Price for Toyota 86 Announced


Toyota South Africa Motors has just announced prices of the all-new Toyota 86, which officially debuts locally with the standard model on the 9th July.  This will be followed shortly by two high-spec versions later in the month.

With a starting price of just R298 500 (incl. VAT) for the standard model, well within reach of those wanting an alternative to the predictable set of hot hatches.

At the top end of the range are the two highly specified versions, the 86 High manual will retail for R329 400 while the 86 High 6-speed Auto (with paddle shift) will carry a sticker price of just R346 500.

All Toyota 86 models come with a four-year / 60 000km service plan as standard.

All Toyota 86 models are equipped with the newly-developed Subaru 2.0-litre, four-cylinder normally aspirated boxer engine which churns out 147kW at 7000rpm and 205Nm of torque at 6400-6600rpm.

“The 86 is so much more than just another product, it signals a completely new direction for Toyota,” says Kerry Roodt, General Manager of Marketing Communications. “Here you have a car that’s designed entirely around the driver; a car that exists purely for those who regard driving as a passion rather than a necessity. These cars have, of course, always existed, but for the first time a motor manufacturer is making this much automotive fun available to as wide an audience as possible – that’s genius!”

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Toyota Etios to be launched in May

Toyota Etios to be launched in May

The Toyota Etios which was shown at last years Johannesburg International Motor Show (JIMS) is set to be launched in South Africa on the 21st May this year.

The Etios is meant to fill in the gap for Toyota in the Sub-B segment which was previously filled by the Toyota Tazz which was discontinued more than five years ago.

Not much has been said with regards to the vehicles specifications but we know it will be powered by a 1.5 litre engine. If the specs of the Etios are similar to those offered on the version sold in India, the 1.5 litre engine should have a power rating of 66 Kw at 5600 rpm and 132 Nm of torque at 3000 rpm.

The overall wheelbase of the car is 2550 mm and according to Toyota the Etios hatch will have the biggest boot (595litres) in its class.

The Etios will be sold as both a hatch and a sedan. There will be two model grades offered in South Africa, the XI and XS. Both model grades will have body-coloured bumpers and 14-inch steel wheels with full wheel trims. The XS models also get a colour-coded grille and door handles as well as a few chrome accents.

Toyota will be revealing more about the Etios in the coming weeks, so keep an eye out for additional updates.

Check the video below for a review done by Autocar India.

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Supreme Springs at the Dakar Rally

Supreme Springs at the Dakar Rally


Toyota South Africa made history this year by achieving 3rd place at the 2012 Dakar rally. The Dakar Rally is regarded as the toughest rally in the world. The Rally started off in the Argentine coastal resort city of Mar del Plata on January the 1st and finished in Lima, the capital city of Peru, on January the 15th after passing through Chile.

The Dakar rally was contested by 465 cars, trucks, motorcycles and quads which competed over 14 special stages totaling 4 200km and a total distance close to 9 000 km.

Through the Toyota ‘buy local’ marketing campaign, Supreme Spring, amongst others, had the opportunity to design and build key components for the suspension and drive train, specifically made for the Imperial Toyota Team vehicle. The Supreme Team consisted of Colin Ellison, Technical Director at Supreme Spring, (also an avid racing driver himself) and his Engineering team.

Supreme Spring was extremely excited to be part of and to have been able to contribute to the proudly South African composition of the Dakar Team. The Product Development team at Supreme Spring worked rigorously to meet the tight deadlines set and the unique and extremely difficult performance requirements that were to be expected of the components in the race. Supreme Spring would like to thank the staff on the Torsion Bar, Cold Coil and CNC Machining lines as well as our heat treatment expert and the ATE team for their contribution. Supreme Spring is proud to have been considered Specialist Official Supplier and Technical Partner and greatly acknowledges the opportunity Toyota Motorsport afforded us to be part of their Proudly South Team in the quest for victory with a podium finish.

R. Amlima

Sales & Marketing

Supreme Spring (A division of Metair Investments Limited)


Source: 3D-Car-Shows, Toyota Motor Sport

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