toyota reliability

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BALL IN TOYOTA’S COURT FOR NEW MODEL MOMENTUM

Friday, February 11th, 2011
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Ball In Toyota's Court For New Model Momentum

Even though a federal study finds no evidence that electronic defects account for sudden acceleration in its vehicles, Toyota faces major hurdles restoring its image and market share. A host of new and revamped planned product introductions places the ball in Toyota’s court for revitalized Momentum.

“Customers are walking away with the perception that even though a Toyota is well built, they don’t see it as the next step in design, styling and innovative features,” said Alexander Edwards of Strategic Vision Inc., an automotive research and marketing consulting firm.

That’s a pretty strong customer perception statement and for the first time in years, Ford and Chevrolet brands are eating into Toyota market share and  in some cases, outselling Toyotas.

One example buyer who purchased an SUV last month rejected Toyota after test-driving several makes and models.

“I liked the people at Toyota the best, but the cars lagged a bit, both in styling and acceleration,” the buyer said. She also liked the interior of the SUV she purchased better.

Toyota’s share of the U.S. auto market fell to 15.2 percent last year from 17 percent in 2009. Continued momentum was of course hampered by the recall of millions of vehicles, the record payment of nearly $50 million in federal fines for failing to promptly inform regulators of defects in its vehicles and delaying recalls, and the endless government hearings. It was the only major automaker to log a sales decrease from 2009.

The company is responding with a flood of new products including a new Prius Wagon and new Camry and will launch a new advertising campaign this month that reminds consumers that it remains the top retail car brand in America, a Toyota Management spokesperson said, adding, “You are now going to see a relentless focus on our product.”

COULD 200,000 MILES ODOMETER BE THE NEW 100,000 MILES?

Sunday, July 11th, 2010
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Is 200,000 Miles On the Odometer the New 100,000 Miles?… Catch Phrases, Don’t you just love them, “Can You Hear Me Now?”, “What’s In Your Wallet?”, ‘Get My Ducks in A Row”, “60 Is The New 40!,…And now this, “200,000 Miles Is The New 100,000 Miles On A Car”. The meaning here of course is that some of the cars we have today will go 200,000 miles before any significant maintenance issues occur.200,000 mile odometer

 This certainly is a real possibility for the millions of Toyota drivers out there. In most cases with proper minimum maintenance, that 200,000 mile Toyota has another 100,000 miles in it or more before anything big might occur. Check out the 2005 600,000 mile Corolla.

Not so long ago, people counted themselves lucky if their car made it 100,000 miles before it gave out. As late as the 1980s and 1990s, many odometers didn’t even carry enough digits to handle 100k. Years before that people would say that they needed to trade when their car had 40,000 miles on it.

But in the spirit of  “60 is the new 40”, it could be said that 200,000 miles is the new 100,000 miles odometer… primarily due to improvements in quality.

Drivers are beginning to take ownership of this proposition. Statistical studies and a growing number of “high mileage” car clubs cropping up around the country support the idea.

Adding to this growing phenomenon is the fact that 80% of all Toyota vehicles produced over the past 20 years are on the road! What makes Toyota cars so reliable and popular ? It’s a winning combination of affordability, reliability and brand perception. These vehicles consistently deliver great trouble free value over a long period of time in a package that people want providing the best overall value in terms of total cost of ownership.

Toyota not only is a major contributor to extended odometer life, but the company is also extending customer base at the other end. Last year, the “Cash for Clunkers” program, designed to boost auto sales and get gas-guzzling vehicles off the road, showed that the typical vehicle turned in under the program was 14 years old and averaged 160,000 miles, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). It took a bonus of $3,500 to $4,500 to persuade owners to turn these vehicles in…

And What Did These Owners Replace Their “Clunker” With?  Toyota,… With The Highest Market Share At Nearly 20%!

To some extent, though, tough economic conditions are leading consumers to hang onto their cars longer. But the trend was underway well before the downturn. Average vehicle age has climbed steadily for a decade, going from 8.8 years in 1999 to 10.6 years late last year. Longer warranties, financing contracts, and the high reliabilities of Toyota are key factors behind the trend.

Most owners would rather not drive their vehicles into oblivion, of course. The average driver keeps a new vehicle nearly 6 years — up from about four and one-half years in 2002, according to R.L. Polk figures. Then it is sold once or twice, on average, over its lifetime.

Even if owners aren’t out to set mileage records, careful adherence to maintenance schedules pays off in a higher resale value and higher probability of the vehicle being in good condition up to 200,000 miles or higher.