Category: Toyota Santa Monica
For the ninth consecutive year, LAcarGUY will be sponsoring the Twilight Dance Series, a production of the Santa Monica Pier Restoration Corporation, will again present ten free concerts on the deck of the Santa Monica Pier this year, beginning July 7, 2011. The concert will feature high-profile artists from all over the world, every Thursday night from 7 pm to 10 pm, bringing Southern California a treasured weekly live music experience.
Each Thursday night, this highly-attended concert series will showcase a different musical theme: The SaMo Mambo: Salsa, ‘80s Pop, Australia Rocks the Pier!, Reggae/Ska, La Monica Ballroom Then & Now, Making Waves: A Night of Surf Guitar, Tango on the Timbers, Americana, and New Orleans Funk and Blues. The Twilight Dance Series is co-produced by Los Angeles-based Rum & Humble, known for presenting both established and homegrown talent in venues such as the Hollywood Bowl and Greek Theatre.
LAcarGUY is a presenting sponsor so come by to see us on stage and visit our booth in the concert area. Teams from our various dealerships will be present on different days and each will be bringing a special vehicle for you to checkout.
Visit us for your chance to win an iPad.
July 14: Lexus Santa Monica
Come by and checkout one of our Lexus vehicles.
July 28: Volkswagen Santa Monica
Come by and checkout the 2012 Volkswagen Passat.
August 4: Toyota Santa Monica
Come by and checkout one of our hybrid vehicles.
August 11: Lexus of Santa Monica
Come by and checkout one of our Lexus vehicles.
Contact us if you have any question and check out the event website for further details. See you then!
For some there is still a stigma with buying a pre-owned car. “Why do I want to buy someone else’s problems? They got rid of that car for a REASON!” are the most oft heard reasons for only buying new. And yet the other side of that coin is you often can get much more value for your dollar buy buying a car that is only a couple years old. Couple that with a car that has gone through a 160+ point inspection by a Certified Toyota trained technician, and you have a Toyota Certified Pre-Owned car that looks and feels showroom new!
At Toyota Santa Monica we take the time to put a personal touch on every certified pre-owned Toyota. Not only do we a have dedicated technician go over the car, but our Pre-Owned Manager Michael Edelstein goes over them as well. Every ding, every dent, every scratch has been removed. Every car not only comes with the checklist of 160+ items we’ve inspected for, but it also comes with a Carfax report so you can see the full history of the car as well.
TORRANCE, Calif. — This week marks 10 years since Toyota launched the Prius, its highly popular hybrid vehicle with the gas/electric powertrain. To commemorate the occasion, executives shared a wide array of data connected with this model’s success.
During the past decade, the automaker has moved more than 1.8 million Prius models worldwide, with almost 900,000 of those sales in the U.S. alone.
Toyota calculated the environmental savings Prius owners provided. Based on formulas from the Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. consumers who own a Prius have prevented an estimated 9 million tons of CO2 from entering the atmosphere versus if they operated a conventional vehicle.
Furthermore, the automaker contends Prius owners have conserved approximately 650 million gallons of gas, resulting in a net savings of about $1.5 billion.
Toyota recalled the first Prius came to North America in July of 2000. That year, executives remembered that the toast of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit was the Hummer H2, while national gas prices averaged about $1.50 per gallon.
Starting out, the automaker established modest sales goals for the Prius of 12,000 units per year. OEM officials remained steadfast in their defense of the vehicle despite some unflattering early reviews.
“With a real-world 35 mpg, this is a car that neither enthusiasts nor greenies can fully embrace,” Toyota recollected one industry magazine stating.
Toyota also contends competing manufacturers announced that hybrids were “not an economical or practical solution” to America’s future needs. The company believed many OEMs insisted that Toyota had provided the solution to a problem that did not exist.
“Prius owners, however, felt otherwise,” Toyota officials declared. “Widely characterized as extreme environmentalists, early Prius adopters were actually more likely to be tech-savvy professionals.
“Those first owners, well aware of public events and global developments, were conscious of the impact of their own choices,” Toyota management went on to say. “They became articulate advocates for the technology. Soon, demand outstripped supply, and production had to be stepped up as waiting lists became months long.”
As fuel costs spiked, the automaker discovered a clear economic rationale for purchase emerged.
“Driving a Prius delivered a new kind of satisfaction, based on a new set of values,” Toyota officials determined. “It was a car enriched with advanced features, in tune with global issues that assumed greater importance every year. It provided an affordable transportation solution that earlier all-electric cars did not, as it was able to use existing infrastructure without concerns for recharging or range limitations.”
Now, Toyota said the Prius is the third-best selling vehicle in its lineup. The company also asserts owner loyalty figures are among the highest in the automotive industry.
“Toyota recognized in the 1990s that sustainable transportation would become a huge challenge in the coming decades,” said Jim Lentz, president and chief operating officer of Toyota Motor Sales USA.
“Those realizations proved accurate, and if anything, even more profound considering what we know today,” Lentz added.
Refining the Prius
Toyota delved into how the Prius’ technology has improved since its launch.
With the first-generation compact Prius, buyers got 97 combined horsepower and were told to expect 41 mpg. Now a decade later, the midsize Prius has 134 horsepower and delivers an EPA rating of 50 mpg overall.
Compared to the original model, Toyota believes the 2010 Prius is bigger, faster and even cleaner. While the first generation was classified as a Super Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle (SULEV), the automaker noted the current Prius is a SULEV/AT-PZEV, meaning that it meets super-ultra-low-emissions-vehicle requirements, and emits zero emissions at rest.
As the technology improved, Toyota remembered how reviews significantly changed, too. When Motor Trend named the Prius the 2004 Car of the Year, Toyota indicated magazine officials declared they were “thoroughly impressed with the Prius as not only a technological marvel, but as a truly liveable sedan.”
At the same time, Toyota recalled how The Car Connection described the Prius as “nothing less than the world’s most sophisticated powertrain ever delivered to ordinary customers.”
Insights into Prius Development
Toyota shared some of the details of how its company brain trust developed the vehicle.
According to officials, creating the unit that became the Prius was accomplished in a relatively short amount of time through use of computer models to design and prove ideas. By minimizing the use of prototypes, Toyota engineers believe they changed the way vehicles are designed and built.
The automaker indicated many of the components had to be invented from scratch. Those that had already been invented, such as regenerative brakes and electronic power steering, needed to be improved and adapted for mass production. Global standards for electronic components had to be set and new software needed to be written.
Toyota pointed out a total of nine on-board processors were needed to manage the power delivery between engine, battery, brakes and motor/generator. Many motors and batteries were developed, tested, and discarded before they could be proven. Engines had to be converted to run on the more efficient Atkinson Cycle to power a new, unique transaxle.
Furthermore, the manufactured stressed a completely new type of instrumentation had to be developed. With the Prius, Toyota said there was a need to monitor the interplay between the engine and the battery, leading to a display that kept the driver informed of the status on both counts.
The OEM declared the new instrumentation empowered the drivers to improve mileage by altering their technique, turning driving into an interactive game.
“Today, mileage feedback displays are in use on almost every new vehicle on the market,” Toyota interjected.
The automaker went on to note unprecedented quality-control standards had to be instituted. The reason was motors and batteries had to be reliable enough for stationary use also proved vulnerable to heat, cold and vibration. Officials established multimillion-dollar joint ventures in order to assure the G21 Project, as it was called, could one day lead to a mass-produced vehicle.
“These investments were made in an automotive environment that was dominated by sales of trucks and SUVs; in a world that The Economist described as ‘drowning in oil,'” Toyota recalled.
“Through it all, Toyota management remained convinced that their goal of combining fuel efficiency with environmental performance would one day be appreciated,” executives added.
Today, Toyota contends there are nearly 30 hybrid models on the road from 12 brands with more on the drawing boards. The manufacturer indicated many of the patents filed during the development of the original Prius are now licensed to other OEMs that also take advantage of Toyota’s initial R&D investment.
“Nevertheless, one out of every two hybrids on American roads is a Prius, which remains the benchmark to which all hybrid cars are compared,” Toyota emphasized.
Prius of the Future
One significant advancement is the Prius Plug-In Hybrid.
The company indicated a fleet of Prius Plug-In vehicles is now in a global-demonstration program aimed at proving their capabilities and fine-tuning the design to meet customer expectations.
Toyota mentioned that the unit is designed with small Lithium-Ion battery packs that are aimed to help the PHV produce less greenhouse gas emissions than conventional hybrid vehicles. A commercial PHV is scheduled to go on sale in 2012.
Longer term, Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive components and software are intended to provide a direct bridge to clean, efficient drivetrains of the future. And while breakthrough technologies are on the horizon, the automaker believes continuing gains in battery technology and internal combustion engines keep the Prius competitive.
“Even in a world of alternative fuels, electric cars and hydrogen fuel cells, it’s a good bet that Prius cars based on Hybrid Synergy Drive will be around for a long time to come,” Toyota declared.
Prius Timeline with Significant Dates and Milestones
—1990: Meetings begin concept work on Project G21, “a car for the 21st Century” in Toyota City and at the Higashifugi Technical Center. The fuel economy target was 20 kilometers per liter, about 50 percent better than other passenger vehicles of the time.
—January 1994: Project team addresses drivetrain, chassis and packaging decisions. The team was granted the right to develop new parts from scratch “if necessary.”
—July 1994: G21 Project, Phase III begins, accelerating development for production of the Prius parallel to development of Toyota’s experimental hybrid system.
—June 1995: Toyota Hybrid System approved and code-named 890T.
—October 1995: Hybrid concept Prius displayed at Tokyo Motor Show with propulsion system described as Toyota-EMS (Energy Management System).
—December 1996: Anticipating the future EV and hybrid vehicle market, Panasonic EV Energy was established as a joint venture between Matsushita and Toyota.
—December 1997: Gen 1 Prius launched in Japan after a final design period of 17 months. Wins Japan Car of the Year award and Global Climate Protection Award from the U.S. EPA, among other accolades.
—1998: Announced in July that Toyota would export 20,000 units annually to North America and Europe.
—2000: Post-Prius era of automotive history begins. From this time on, the concept of environmental performance begins to take root, and all economy cars would be compared to the Prius.
—2003: Prius sales hit 24,000 units, double the number originally planned.
—2004: Second generation Prius launched, called Car of the Year by Motor Trend.
—2007: Total U.S. Prius sales reach 500,000 units since it first launched in July 2000.
—2008: National average gas prices hit $4.09 per gallon on July 7.
—2009: Third generation Prius launched as 2010 model with larger 1.8-liter engine, 0.25 co-efficient of drag and 51 mpg city.
We’ve been blown away lately by the buzz around the Toyota Sienna’s new online campaign “Swagger Wagon”. It’s a fun, engaging departure from traditional advertising for one of our favorite brands at LAcarGUY. People are loving their new Sienna van from Toyota Santa Monica and Toyota of Hollywood and we’re impressed with all of the improvements that have come along with the redesign.
We feel that this is going to be a watershed year for our beloved Toyota brand, and the level of support from an amazing percentage of our customers show that your loyalty is as high as our. So enjoy the “Swagger Series”, maybe even make your own version and send it in to us!
Check out the Swagger Wagon website for MP3 and ringtone downloads now!!
The reliable pack animals are unwitting participants in the global green dialogue.
Our Facebook and Twitter pages are filled with exciting news, events, upcoming models and exclusive deals and we encourage you to participate.
This November we will be giving away an Ipod Nano and FIVE $50 gas cards to
our social media fans throughout the month (Followers/Fans on both
double their chances). Winners* will be randomly picked from our
followers and fans at the end of November. In addition, ALL
fans/followers will receive 10% off their next service or parts
purchase in November**! (check your Facebook/Twitter email for coupon)
Toyota Santa Monica participated in the Ride and
Drive Lot at the 4th Annual Alt Car Expo on October 2-3 2009 at the Santa Monica Civic. The Ride and Drive Lot provided a hands-on experience with all different technologies
of vehicle manufacturers representing the latest choices of Electric, Hydrogen,
Biodiesel, Natural Gas, Propane, Hybrid, Plug In, Ethanol and Cycling.
Toyota Santa Monica's General Manager Bill Rinker and General Sales Manager Billy Rinker (along with 11 Toyota Santa Monica product specialists) answered questions and gave test drives throughout the day.
Said Bill, "we were really impressed with the turnout. Over two days there were approximately 10,000 people coming and going. We had 7 hybrid vehicles to show and did over 100 test drives! One of our highlights was getting to speak with Governor Schwarzenegger who was especially interested in the solar
paneled roof on the Prius."
LAcarGUY.com is returns as Presenting sponsor of the 19th annual Manhattan Beach Pumpkin Race Festival.
The festival takes place on Sunday, October 25th and we aren't just sponsoring… Each of our dealerships will have entries in the race. We're car guys, what did you expect?
LAcarGUY will be also bring several of our 2010 vehicles to the race, so be sure to come by and say hi.
What is the World Famous Pumpkin Race?
A fun-spirited festival like no other! The highlight of the Pumpkin Race
is a unique side-by-side single elimination race featuring handcrafted,
decorated Pumpkin Race Cars in a funky, hilarious, suspenseful, and dramatic
display of American ingenuity. Excitement builds as Pumpkin Race Car teams
battle head-to-head for the coveted Pumpkin Race Championship Trophy. We
also award other prizes for Best Decoration, Most Innovative Design, and
Best Crash. Proceeds for this event go to the Beach Cities Education Foundation.
To get more info to enter your pumpkin race car go to http://www.pumpkinrace.com/
The Audi A3 TDI, Toyota Prius and Volkswagen Golf TDI have been nominated for "Green Car of the Year." We'll be rooting for all three since we carry all three models at LAcarGUY.com. We have the 2010 Prius in stock at Toyota of Hollywood and Toyota Santa Monica. Pacific Audi will carry the A3 TDI very soon and VW Santa Monica and Pacific VW are looking forward to seeing their first TDI Golf soon.
LAcarGUY employees had a great time on saturday participating in Heal The Bay's Coastal Cleanup. The event was a HUGE success with over 14,000 volunteers in attendance to clean up our beaches for 3 hours on Saturday. Heal The Bay also set a record for removing over 300,000 lbs of trash. Amazing job Heal the Bay. We were proud to be a part of the clean up.