Category: Toyota Santa Monica
The big question: When is it coming out?
No firm date was given, but it looks like early first quarter of 2016
What is going to cost?
Again, no firm numbers were given, but we’d bet that it will be very close in pricing to the current one, even though there is more content and safety items available.
How big is it?
The new Prius is 2.4 inches longer, 0.6 inches wider and 0.8 inches lower than the model it replaces, providing a planted on-road presence while delivering more occupant and cargo room.
Will it get better fuel economy?
With an expected ten percent improvement in EPA estimated MPG on core models, Prius will offer best-in-class fuel economy among vehicles without a plug. A soon-to-be unveiled Eco model will achieve an even greater improvement, strengthening Toyota’s leadership in hybrid fuel efficiency.
What is the interior like?
The Prius’ new, premium interior adopts advanced technology complemented by features that are functional, fun and have high visual impact. The wrap-around dash design, form-hugging seats, ease of controls and improved visibility put the driver in complete control.
What has Toyota done to make the Prius safer?
The new global architecture that the 2016 Prius is built on also provides a more rigid structural framework to help enhance occupant protection in the event of a collision. The high strength upper body is designed to distribute frontal collision impact energy. Plus, the Prius will be among the first U.S. models to offer Toyota Safety Sense (TSS), a new multi-feature advanced safety package anchored by automated pre-collision braking. TSS bundles cutting edge safety technologies including:
- Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection
- Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist
- Full-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control
- Automatic High Beams
What inspired the design?
From the side, it is longer and sleeker with the overall outline evoking an athletic shape. Inspired by a runner in the starting blocks, the sporty design conveys a feeling of forward motion.
The hood is lower and the distinctive roof peak has been moved forward. Bold character lines run along the side from the front fenders – one just above the sill that sweeps up towards the rear fender, while the upper crease morphs into the rear spoiler, which has been lowered.
The use of new standard LED headlamps minimizes the Prius’ front fascia and, at the same time, provides an arresting lighting display which helps define the vehicle’s character. The unique and striking rear combination lamps express the distinctive lines of the Prius from the rear spoiler to the trailing edges of the sides.
When can I place my order?
Make sure that you follow us on Facebook and Twitter and we will let you know just as soon as you can.
Automotive News and Transport Evolved recently interviewed LAcarGuy owner Mike Sullivan about the Toyota Mirai and about how his Toyota dealership in Santa Monica California is one of just eight dealerships in the country releasing the product early on.
The Mirai is One Car Sullivan Isn’t Selling
Don’t get me wrong, the Toyota Mirai will be available for order at Toyota of Santa Monica, and it will be available there earlier than most other places in the world. While the car’s going to be in stock, Mike Sullivan explains that getting the cars to customers is more of a matchmaking process than it is a numbers game like most vehicles are. This is because he wants to make sure that each and every one of the early adopters truly loves the car.
If a buyer comes into the dealership and requests the vehicle the dealership will look them over and decide if the car is a good fit for their lifestyle. If it isn’t they will actually turn customers down and redirect them to a more suitable vehicle. This isn’t to be mean, or to be overly exclusive. It’s just to make sure that customers aren’t unhappy with their purchase.
This is what Sullivan had to say about the challenge of selling the Mirai.“With everything else on my lot, I’m selling something. It’s what I do,” “This car is the exact opposite. It’s the reverse of selling. We’re going to turn people down if this isn’t the car for you.”
Challenges with the Mirai
The Toyota Mirai isn’t a bargain car with a starting price of $58,325 and initially it won’t be the easiest to refuel with just a handful of hydrogen refueling stations around California. For these two reasons the vehicle simply isn’t going to be a good fit for everyone. If you don’t live close enough to refueling stations it will be a burden fueling up the car. If you’re looking for a bargain car this one’s likely too expensive.
Choosing the Original Mirai Dealerships
The first eight stores stocked with the Mirai were all chosen for a list of specific reasons. They are all located near planned hydrogen fueling stations. They are all high-volume electric and hybrid selling locations and they have the finances to handle any upgrades necessary to make the sales possible.
Giving Customers an Early Look at the Mirai
Mike Sullivan has been working hard to promote the Mirai and everything the vehicle stands for. He even hopped on the live streaming program Periscope to give dozens of interested people a walk around look at the Mirai in real time.
Introducing the Mirai Champion
Many of the eight Toyota dealerships to start off selling the Mirai before any others in the country plan on assigning a single employee to serve as the Mirai expert. This Mirai Champion will talk with every customer interested in buying the hydrogen fuel-cell car. The hope with assigning a single person to the task is that they become an expert on the matter and provide a more reliable and consistent buying experience for each of the Mirai shoppers. A similar strategy was employed by Nissan when the company began selling the LEAF to customers.
Toyota of Santa Monica Upgrades
To get the Toyota dealership ready to sell the Mirai a number of improvements have to be made to it. The first is an upgrade to the repair center so that repairs and services can be performed on the Mirai after it starts selling to customers. That way customers have a place they can take the vehicle if any work needs to be performed. Sullivan is also planning to add a personal hydrogen refueling station so that dealership customers can refuel their vehicles after making the purchase. This will cost around $150,000 for the dealership to do, but it’s a small price to make the dealership more accessible and it’s a real perk for customers that live in the area.
LAcarGUY has lead the revolution when it comes to offering environmentally friendly vehicles for sale to the public, more people come to the LAcarGUY family of dealers for EV’s Hybrids and Clean Diesels that just about anyone else in the country. Our leadership on that front continues as Toyota Santa Monica has been named one of eight exclusive stores to sell the Toyota Mirai, the next step in the revolution of environmentally responsible vehicles from Toyota.
The Toyota Mirai is a four-door, mid-size sedan with performance that fully competes with traditional internal combustion engines – but it uses no gasoline and emits nothing but water vapor. The groundbreaking fuel cell electric vehicle is powered by hydrogen, re-fuels in about five minutes, and travels up to 300 miles on a full tank.
In its basic operation, a fuel cell vehicle works much like a battery electric vehicle. But instead of the large drive battery, Mirai’s fuel cell stack combines hydrogen gas from tanks with oxygen to produce electricity that powers the electric motor.
Beginning in summer, you can request a Mirai by visiting www.toyota.com/mirai. Production of the Mirai is limited to approximately 3000 units through 2017 , and vehicles will be placed with select, eligible customers. Therefore, we encourage you to make your requests early to save a potential parking spot in transportation history. You can visit www.toyota.com/mirai today to sign up for more information and notification of exact order request launch timing in the coming months, also make sure to stop in at Toyota Santa Monica to talk to us about the Mirai, and watch for more news coming on our Facebook and Twitter pages.
For Toyota, every day is Earth Day and the little things add up, especially when almost 43,000 team members across 14 North America manufacturing plants do them. Such efforts have saved nearly $600 million since benchmarking began in 2002.
They’ve also resulted in Toyota’s 11th consecutive ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award from the U.S. EPA for continued leadership in protecting the environment through superior energy efficiency.
Eleven consecutive ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Awards are the most by any automaker.
Examples of achieving energy efficiency at Toyota’s 14 North American manufacturing plants include:
- Reduced total energy use by 35 percent per vehicle produced or 14 billion kilowatt hours of energy.* That’s enough power to keep the city of Chicago up and running for nearly an entire year.
- Reduced CO2 emissions by 40 percent per vehicle produced by eliminating the use of electricity and natural gas when avoidable.**Since benchmarking began in 2002 “While there’s always room for improvement, achieving energy efficiency demonstrates that good ideas have helped us become environmentally responsible while making a significant impact to our bottom line,” said Robin Haugen general manager of Toyota’s plant and environmental group. “Through our team members’ efforts and outstanding collaboration, we
have minimized our environmental footprint in communities where we assemble vehicles, engines and parts. We’re so proud to receive our 11th consecutive ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award from the U.S. EPA and we’ll strive to do better.”
Recent environmental improvement activities across some of Toyota’s 14 manufacturing plants include:
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Alabama (Huntsville)
- Saved 300,000 gallons of water a year – enough to fill half of an Olympic-size swimming pool – by reusing compressor condensate water in the cooling tower. The tower accounts for nearly 50 percent of the facility’s water use.
- Switched to higher-efficiency motors and used compressed air more efficiently.
- Installed LED lighting, solar lights and daylighting to reduce purchased electricity.
- All environmental projects – part of a $1 million investment to make the plant more sustainable – result in annual saving of more than 3.3 million kilowatts hours, equal to 125 average U.S. homes and reducing more than 2,000 metric tons of CO2.Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Indiana (Princeton)
Reduced the volume of air that has to be conditioned in the paint booths, a process that’s necessary for the paint to adhere to vehicles. The project reduced energy use by 125,000 MMBtus, enough to power 1,450 average U.S. homes for a year and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 8,900 metric tons.
In addition to the energy and greenhouse gas savings, the improved paint process reduced the amount of paint and emissions.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky (Georgetown)
The plant has teamed up with Waste Services of the Bluegrass to generate power from local landfill waste that naturally creates methane gas, marking the region’s first business-to-business landfill gas to energy initiative. Toyota estimates the locally generated landfill gas will supply enough power each year for the production of 10,000 vehicles. Once operational later this spring, the system will generate one megawatt of electricity each hour the system is operating, or about what it takes to power nearly 800 average U.S. homes annually.
Plus landfill greenhouse gas emissions will be cut by as much as 90 percent, resulting in better air quality for the local community.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Mississippi (Blue Springs)
- Installed a geothermal heat exchanger that supplies chilled water to a compressed airdryer to eliminate the chiller load in the winter months when the plant’s HVAC systems are not using chilled water. This reduces electricity usage by 1.5 million kilowatt hours per year, equal to 56 average U.S. homes.
- Installed a single axis solar cell array in spring 2013, with a maximum output of 50 kilowatts. The power generated by the array is redirected back to New Albany Light,
Gas & Water, the local utility company, and ultimately is transferred back onto the grid for public use.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Texas (San Antonio)
The plant uses about 1 million gallons of recycled water per production day, or about 250 million gallons each year. Since its opening in 2007, the plant has used nearly 2 billion gallons of recycled water. That’s nearly 2 billion gallons that wasn’t drawn from the local Edwards Aquifer.
Toyota’s accomplishments will be recognized in Washington, D.C. on April 20.
Three Santa Monica LAcarGUY dealerships participated this year for the Wellbeing Festival held at the Santa Monica Civic Center. Each had a part in the LAcarGUY booth and represented the local community and advanced car technology. The annual event takes time to celebrate local business while emphasizing the importance of wellbeing and health. Since these three Santa Monica dealerships are a part of the local business community they were welcome additions to the more than 120 different companies that participated in the day in some way.
Volkswagen, Toyota, Lexus
Three Santa Monica LAcarGUY dealerships were present at the Wellbeing Fest on October 18th representing some of the local businesses in the Santa Monica area. While there they spoke about businesses large and small benefit the area and
About the Festival
The Wellbeing Fest is a day to celebrate Wellbeing and good health and to celebrate local businesses in the Santa Monica area. More than 3,000 people attended the event and 120 different businesses had an exhibit throughout the day.
The festival took place at the Santa Monica Civic Center and was put on by the Chamber of Commerce to help improve business practices in the area. Throughout the day it featured demonstrations, helpful tech learning sessions, and a variety of booths put on by local businesses.
The Dealerships Involved
Lexus of Santa Monica, Toyota Santa Monica and Volkswagen Santa Monica were all present at the community event. Each brought a car along to show off and presented some of the latest technology while reinforcing the message that it’s beneficial to your community to shop locally.
With Thanksgiving over, the holiday season is officially upon us. In preparation for Christmas, Santa will be stopping by the LAcarGUY stores to spread the joy of the holidays.
Do you have a gift you’d like to ask Santa for? Are you unsure if you’re on the naughty or nice list? Or do you just want to take a picture with the big guy himself?
Child or adult, LAcarGUY encourages you to stop by its stores to meet Santa and enjoy breakfast on us. Full details are below. Be sure to find the store nearest you, or the store with the vehicle you’ll be asking Santa to bring you for Christmas, to see if Santa will be stopping by from 9 a.m. to noon on December 7th or 14th!
Dec 7th from 9am – 12pm:
Audi Pacific: 20460 Hawthorne Blvd. Torrance, CA 90503
Pacific Volkswagen: 14900 Hindry Ave Hawthorne, CA 90250
Pacific Subaru: 20550 Hawthorne Blvd. Torrance, CA 90503
Dec 14th from 9am – 12pm:
Toyota of Santa Monica: 801 Santa Monica Blvd Santa Monica, CA 90401
Lexus of Santa Monica: 1501 Santa Monica Blvd Santa Monica, CA 90404
Volkswagen of Santa Monica: 2440 Santa Monica Blvd Santa Monica, CA 90404
Toyota of Hollywood: 6000 Hollywood Blvd Hollywood, CA 90028
Pacific VW (Pet Day): 14900 Hindry Ave Hawthorne, CA 90250
Come meet SpongeBob Squarepants and see the all-new Highlander Hybrid at the LA Auto Show this weekend
Toyota’s Highlander Hybrid has always been a near-perfect combination of size, luxury, fuel efficiency and power, and for 2014 a dose of style can be added to its long list of positive attributes.
With the recent redesign of the gas-powered Highlander, the Highlander Hybrid benefits from fresh new looks. With an increase in length and width over the outgoing model, the new Highlander Hybrid has road presence like no Highlander before it.
Using the same powertrain as it predecessor, the V6-powered 2014 Highlander Hybrid should manage the same combined EPA fuel economy rating of 28 mpg.
The 2014 Highlander Hybrid will be available in two trims: Limited and Limited Platinum. Starting at $47,300, the Highlander Hybrid Limited comes standard with an eight-inch touchscreen display with navigation and Toyota’s Entune system, eight airbags, and a backup camera among other things.
Moving up the Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum adds Safety Connect subscription emergency services, a radar-based cruise control with Toyota’s Pre-Collision safety system to help in avoiding accidents, a lane departure warning system, panoramic moonroof, and heated seats in the second row. The Highlander Hybrid Limited Platinum will be priced at $49,790.
Meet SpongeBob Squarepants
If the passengers you’re hauling in your 2014 Toyota Highlander or Highlander Hybrid happen to be children, be sure to stop by the Los Angeles Auto Show this weekend (Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday) to meet SpongeBob Squarepants and see the SpongeBob Squarepants Toyota Highlander.
Teaming up with Nickelodeon, Toyota will offer a build your own SpongeBob booth, airbrush tattoo artists, and a chance to win a surfboard by Santa Cruz Surfboards from the non-profit environmental group Heal the Bay.
On top of this, Toyota and Nickelodeon will work together to donate $5 to Heal the Bay for each individual who Tweets or Instagrams a picture of the SpongeBob Squarepants Highlander with #SpongeBobHighlander up to $10,000.
To learn more about the 2014 Highlander, Highlander Hybrid, or the SpongeBob Highlander keep following LAcarGUY News.
Toyota will bring six vehicles to the Specialty Equipment Market Association show (SEMA) this week. All six are bespoke vehicles for the show; however, four of these vehicles will be going head-to-head in competition as part of Toyota’s Dream Build Challenge.
Based off of fan votes, one of these vehicles will be crowned victor by none other than Top Gear’s Rutledge Wood.
When marketing a competitive build-off, its best to enlist teams that are no strangers to competition: athletes and their corporate sponsors.
NASCAR driver Parker Kligerman and Kyle Busch Motorsports went the enthusiast route by turning a Toyota Camry SE into a functional rally car. Painted in classic Toyota Racing colors, the CamRally has a stripped away interior, fender flares to cover its wider track, and a big turbo mounted to the V6 engine.
Freestyle skier Simon Dumont and Oakley worked to turn the 2014 4Runner into a skiers dream machine. With an iPad integrated into the dash, rugged roof racks, and knobby tires, Dumont and Oakley’s 4Runner promises to get winter sports fanatics to their mountain of choice in full warmth and comfort.
Channeling both Kligerman’s CamRally and Dumont’s 4Runner, BMX rider Drew Bezanson and Skullcandy turned an everyday Corolla into the Crusher Corolla. With a slick paint job and rally wheels, the Crusher Corolla has the go-anywhere vibe of the CamRally; however, an integrated bike rack, center console mounted iPad, and headrests that mimic Skullcandy’s latest headphones provides the Corolla Crusher with the comfort and technology that the CamRally lacks.
Finally, Supercross riders Justin Brayton and Josh Grant worked with Joe Gibbs Racing to make a Toyota Tundra that caters to the dreams and needs of supercross riders. Unique to their Let’s Go Moto Tundra is this truck’s eight-foot bed and CrewMax cab. That huge bed houses three television screens, a videogame counsel, fridge, and a toolbox, not to mention enough space to transports a motocross bike. The truck was also lifted to ensure that it could make it through rough terrain.
Log onto ToyotaDreamBuild.com to vote for your favorite.
Though not part of the Toyota Dream Build, DC Shoes took on the task of outfitting a Toyota Tacoma to tackle any snowy road or mounted. The truck won its own competition, in which fans voted among a number of designs, with the winning design making it past the drafting table to be turned into a real show car. The truck includes a snowplow, a roof-mounted pop-up tent, and an LED light bar to provide plenty of light when parked in remote locations.
Last, but not least, LifeTime Fitness worked with Toyota to create a RAV4 that’s perfect for any triathlete. With an integrated hot water shower, blender, refrigerator, and custom roof rack, the LifeTime Fitness RAV4 has all the tools any triathlete needs to remain cool and comfortable.
Keep an eye on LA Car Guy to find out which Toyota Dream Build is dubbed champion, and for the latest auto news.
Photo credits: Toyota
With the 2014 Corolla, Toyota brings to market a completely updated version of its bread and butter car. Besides the Camry, the Corolla is the highest selling vehicle in the Toyota lineup with approximately 300,000 units sold per year. Since entering the market in 1968, Toyota has sold 10 million Corolla’s worldwide. Meanwhile, Corolla is responsible for 38% of the company’s overall U.S. sales.
The appeal of the Corolla crosses demographic lines. While its modest price makes it a desirable buy among younger shoppers, the Corolla’s inherent value has made the car a favorite among older buyers, as well as Hispanic and African American buyers, who have made the Corolla the #1 vehicle sold to both communities.
With the 2014 model, Toyota has done a 180 with the Corolla, turning the car into a purchase made out of passion and not just necessity. This starts with an exterior design that is more dramatic than the 2013 model. It certainly makes a statement, as the Corolla will no longer blend in to the background of mall parking lots. Different trim lines are accompanied by different appearance packages. The S model has a unique shape to the grill, grill inserts and fog lamps. The LE Eco model offers a rear spoiler, low rolling resistance tires, and a smoothed out under tray to lessen aerodynamic drag. LED headlights are standard across all models – a first for the compact segment.
The S model, with it’s blacked-out trim and grill, makes for a very striking vehicle, particularly in silver or blue. Other trim lines are more conservative in their style, but still maintain a handsome look.
The wheelbase of the 2014 Corolla has been stretched 3.9 inches, which leads to an additional 5 inches of rear legroom, giving the 2014 Corolla more legroom than some midsize sedans. This added space means two adults will be able to fit very comfortably in the back, with enough headroom for a 6-foot tall person.
The dash area is all-new as well, with a horizontal design and a significant upgrade in materials. While hard plastics are used throughout most of the cabin, each piece has a solid look and feel to it. The steering wheel has a nice thick design that’s very comfortable to grip, meanwhile S models come with a leather-wrapped wheel that gives a more premium feel compared to the standard steering wheel.
Seat materials are also well done. The standard cloth seats offer a nice thickness that leads one to believe the material will stand up to the test of time. Higher-end models use Toyota’s Tex Leather that also has a solid look and feel to it.
Bluetooth is standard on all models, as well as eight airbags, power windows, and the aforementioned first-in-class LED headlights. LE trimmed Corolla’s add Entune audio with a 6.1-inch touchscreen, as well as a backup camera with dynamic glide slope guidance. For 2014 Entune has been upgraded with a simpler user interface, an improved voice recognition system, and additional apps. Unlike in previous years, Entune is now a subscription-free service, allowing all 2014 Corolla owners to enjoy the service.
There are three transmissions available on the 2014 Corolla. Base L model’s come with a standard six-speed manual transmission or optional four-speed automatic transmission. LE and LE Eco models come only with a CVT that is available on the sportier S model with integrated paddle shifters. A six-speed manual is standard fare on Corolla S models.
The CVT transmission is a Toyota designed and built unit that is programed to simulate a seven-speed gearbox. Most of the “shifting” is felt only under heavy throttle settings, otherwise the transmission provides the seamless drive and feel associated with CVTs.
From behind the wheel, the Corolla offers a rather firm but very comfortable ride that soaks up bumps and potholes well at normal city speeds. As you approach highway speeds, the suspension transmits more road imperfections into the cabin. It’s not jarring, but it is noticeable.
One item that drivers will immediately take note of is that the Corolla gives you the feeling of going much slower than the speed you are actually traveling at. Going 70 mph, gives you have the perception that you are actually going 50-55 mph. This speaks to the quality of the Corolla’s chassis and sound deadening materials.
This also translates to the feeling of acceleration in the 2014 Corolla. Between the quiet cabin and the dynamics of the CVT, the perception is that the Corolla is accelerating rather slow; however while not quick, Corolla’s available power is more than adequate for all driving situations.
The LE Eco is unique over other Corolla models in that it employs Toyota’s Valvetronic system. While the standard VVT system adjust the opening and closing of the valves for maximum efficiency, Valvetronic goes one step further in adjusting valve lift and allows Toyota to maximize the engine’s efficiency. The net result is a Corolla with 8 extra horsepower and an EPA-rated 42 mpg on the highway.
The 2014 Corolla will come with two additional airbags over the outgoing model, raising the number to eight. Toyota has also increased side impact resistance by incorporating a new support beam for additional safety protection.
Available in four trim levels, the 2014 Corolla L has a base price of $16,800, while the LE stickers at $18,300, the LE Eco at $18,700, and the S at $19,000. Option packages have been simplified into two categories: Plus and Premium. Toyota made the decision to simplify the Corolla’s option packages from customer feedback and observed buying dynamics.
Toyota knows its customers very well, and the latest Corolla will appeal strongly to them. The core essentials that have made the Corolla so popular are still the cornerstones of the 2014 model; however the car’s dramatic new styling and modern interior that challenges that of the Sentra, Civic, and Forte, give the car a newfound glory. The Corolla continues to fall short of being an all-out “driver’s car” but it is a very competent compact car. With the Corolla entering dealership lots, Toyota’s challenge is to see if the 2014 model can increase the car’s customer base, as Toyota wants to increase Corolla sales by 10%.
LAcarGUY is a longtime supporter of Heal The Bay, participation in beach cleanups, and most recently, LAcarGUY owner Mike Sullivan joined their Board of Directors. To celebrate our partnership, LAcarGUY’s Toyota/Scion Santa Monica will be donating a 2013 Scion FR-S for this year’s Bring Back The Beach live auction, with all proceeds going to Heal The Bay.
We urge you to support this great cause and join us for an amazing night on the Beach with Heal The Bay supporters
Heal the Bay invites you to celebrate the ultimate beach party at our annual Bring Back the Beach gala benefit on May 16, 2013, at Jonathan Beach Club in Santa Monica.
Relax with your toes in the sand while you meet and mix with leaders from Southern California’s environmental, political, business and entertainment communities. Join us for a fun-filled evening under the stars to celebrate our honorees and support the mission of Heal the Bay.
The night will honor the environmental dedication and leadership of Heal the Bay’s former president Mark Gold, D. Env., Oscar-winning actor and environmental champion Jeremy Irons, and founder of the Inclusive Health movement and philanthropist Dr. Howard Murad. Plus enjoy a special acoustic performance by five-time Grammy Award winner Ziggy Marley.
Tickets & Sponsorships
· Tables and Sponsorships: $5,000 – $50,000
· Individual Tickets: $500
· Beach Chic
· Be prepared to walk in the sand to your table. Choose shoes accordingly!