Affordable, reliable, and practical; these are the qualities that people look for in a vehicle. Following the concepts of "kaizen"(continuous development) and "genchi genbutsu"(solving problems at the source instead of behind desks), Toyota listened and saw what the consumers wanted: innovative technology. Toyota leads the forefront of green technology with its Prius, currently ranked third place as the world's best-selling car. With global sales up of to 125 percent, the Toyota Prius is the top choice of consumers for its technology and practicality.
PHV: Plug-in Hybrid Vehicle
A hundred years after Ferdinand Porche developed the Lohner-Porche Mixte Hybrid, Toyota opened the doors to a new era in automobile development with the introduction of the Prius. As of April 2012, the Toyota Prius has sold around 4 million units worldwide. With the introduction of the Prius Plug-in Hybrid, Toyota wants to continue its lead in the automobile hybrid market. The Prius Plug-in Hybrid is equipped with 4.4 kWh lithium-ion batteries that increases its Hybrid Synergy Drive's all-electric range compared to the Toyota Prius. This plug-in hybrid vehicle also earned the 2010 Urban Green Vehicle Award for its attainability, style, and practicality.
HSD: Hybrid Synergy Drive
The Lexus LS 600hL, Yaris, Highlander Hybrid, and Prius are some of Toyota's cars using the HSD or Hybrid Synergy Drive technology. It may sound an engine from a science fiction movie, but Toyota made this technology possible. The hybrid synergy drive is designed with a drive-by-wire system, which uses electromechanical system instead of a standard geared transmission. This optimizes the gear ratio needed at any given speed, and stores more power into the vehicle's batteries. The hybrid synergy drive also features regenerative braking which simulates the deceleration of normal engine braking while saving the power for future boost.
IPAS: Intelligent Parking Assist System
Toyota developed another technology we thought could never exist: the Intelligent Parking Assist System or IPAS. The driver can use its in-dash screen and button controls to let the vehicle steer itself into a parking space. An IPAS is connected to a backup camera and various sensors that help the vehicle parallel or reverse park with ease. The vehicle's computer will alert its driver if it's already parked. Toyota first installed the IPAS on the first generation Prius and Toyota plans to install the system on its future car models.
Toyota continues to develop technologies that are energy-efficient, and can adapt to the consumers' needs. It wants to be part of the clean-technology solution for minimizing our society's carbon footprint for the next 100 years.