Toyota is a worldwide renowned brand in the automotive industry; it is famous for manufacturing super reliable and affordable vehicles. With a rich history and plenty of milestones, including being in the car manufacturing business for more than eight decades, it’s hard not to know a thing or two about the company. However, it’s possible that some details might evade you or might have been forgotten. This piece highlights some interesting Toyota facts to jog your memory.

1. Koromo City Renamed Itself Toyota after the Company’s Success

The headquarters of Toyota are in the city of Toyota in Japan. Interestingly, Toyota wasn’t named after this city; the vice versa is true. Toyota City was initially called Koromo, but the name was changed to Toyota in 1959 after the company achieved unrivaled success.

2. A Toyota Hilux was Set on Fire and Severely “Abused” by Top Gear Crew (And It Still Ran)

white Toyota crew cab pickup truck on ground

In season three of Top Gear, the hosts severely abused a 1988 Toyota Hilux, and it still ran afterward. They started by leaving it on the beach as the tide was coming. Then they placed it on top of a building as it was being demolished before finally setting it on fire. The Hilux was still running afterward and was repaired using tools found in the car’s kit box.

3. Toyota was Initially Called Toyoda

Before Toyota, the brand was known as Toyoda. It was named after the founder, Sakichi Toyoda. A year before it was founded, Toyota hosted a logo contest that included a name change. The company voted to switch to Toyota because, in Japanese, the name has eight strokes, which is associated with good luck.

4. Instead of Donating Funds, Toyota Sent Its Engineers to the New York Food Bank

Unlike other companies that supported the New York Food Bank with grants, Toyota sent its engineers to help in the kitchen. They implemented the art of “Kaizen,” which means positive change there. As a result, the soup kitchen reduced their wait time from 90 to 18 minutes.

5. The Chad Army Defeated the Libyans in 1987 with Toyotas

Named the Toyota War, in 1987, the Chadian army defeated the Libyans with Toyota pickups. With these heavy-duty trucks, the Chadian military obliterated 33 BMP-1 infantry vehicles, 92 battle tanks, and more than 700 soldiers. The Chad army only lost three Toyota trucks.

6. The Toyota Corolla is Afghanistan’s Favorite Car

You will likely find a Toyota vehicle in almost every country. In Afghanistan, the natives have an undying love for the Toyota Corolla. They can be found in virtually every parking lot.

7. Toyota Cheated in the 1995 World Rally Championship

In the 1995 World Rally Championship, Toyota was caught cheating. Their engineers had removed the turbo restrictor that gave their cars a 50 BHP boost. All vehicles in the group A category were mandated to have only 300 BHP. Toyota was banned for 12 months for that.

8. Inspector Gadget Drove a Toyota

The car driven by the Inspector Gadget character from the animated TV series with the same name is a Toyota, a 1938 Supra, specifically.

9. Malaysia Banned Brad Pitt Toyota Adverts, Claiming He was Too Handsome

In 2002, Toyota recruited Bradd Pitt to advertise one of its cars, the Altis, to Malaysian customers. However, the country’s deputy information minister banned the ads, saying the move was an insult and would make the Malaysians feel inferior.

10. A Woman in Florida Sued Hooters for Rewarding Her with a Toy Yoda Instead of a Toyota

Hooters, a famous American restaurant chain, once hosted a beer sales contest in Panama City, Florida. Jodee Berry, one of the waitresses, won this contest. Instead of gifting her a Toyota as promised, they gave her a Toy Yoda. In their defense, Hooters claimed it was a Fool’s Day prank, but Jodee Berry was having none of it. She sued the company and was awarded a Toyota.

11. The Toyota MR2 was Renamed in France

In France, Toyota had to rename the MR2 because it sounded like “Merdeux,” which means “it is shitty.” So, they had to drop the 2. It’s now just called the Toyota MR.

12. Toyota was Once a Textile Business

Before transitioning into car manufacturing, Toyota was initially a maker of textiles. The owner had invented automatic looms, which they sold in the 1920s.

13. Toyota was the First Company to Manufacture 10 Million Cars in a Year

In 2012, Toyota broke the record for being the first auto manufacturer to make 10 million cars in a year. So far, the company has manufactured up to 300 million vehicles.

14. Toyota is Available in More than 170 Countries

Toyota is a global company, unlike most car brands that target specific countries or continents. They are available in more than 170 countries. It has sales networks in nearly all major cities.

15. Toyotas Have a High Resale Value

Compared to other car brands, Toyota has a very high resale value. The company prioritizes quality, and as a result, its cars tend to be very reliable. If used well, a Toyota can serve an individual for up to 10 years. Toyotas have a resale value of more than 50% and 70% for the high-end models.

16. Toyota’s Recall Saved a Man from Imprisonment

From 2009 to 2011, Toyota made a massive recall for the Corollas and Camrys, which had a pedal entrapment issue, a move that saved a man from life imprisonment. Koua Fong Lee had been accused of killing three people in a catastrophic crash, injuring two others. In his defense, the accused claimed that the car had an issue with the accelerator. Lee was freed in 2010 after Toyota’s recall, and all charges were dropped.

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Last Update: May 1, 2024