The story of the largest car company in the world began with a loom. The latter was invented, patented and later also successfully automated by Sakichi Toyoda, who founded a company for their production in 1926.
The automobile division was then founded by his son Kiichiro Toyoda in 1937, and the first mass-produced car was the personal four-door Model AA (actually, production began already in 1936). But you can study the whole story in our previous article about the history of the Japanese car company.
Fast forward 88 years and Toyota is an industrial giant operating in every part of the globe and producing a total of around 10 million cars a year. Thanks to this, at the end of September, the car company celebrated the passing of a milestone in the form of 300 million cars produced. Unreal!
At the same time, of the 300 million, 180 million were intended for the domestic Japanese market, the remaining 120 million were sold in the world. As expected, the historically most popular (and also the longest produced) model is the Corolla, which has sold almost 54 million units since 1966 in hatchback, sedan, station wagon, coupe, or even a minivan and now also a crossover.
In recent years, however, the baton has been taken over by the RAV4 SUV, produced since 1996, which has been the world’s best-selling car of the year for the past several years (although this year it seems likely to be overtaken by the Tesla Model Y electric car).
The move of the automotive industry to the era of electromobility is a challenge for Toyota, as it currently offers only four models (and only in selected markets) together with the Lexus division. At the same time, however, it also presents a whole range of concepts showing a vision of the near future, so the world’s largest car manufacturer will probably not lose its lead just like that.
And by the way, the Toyota company is still producing automatic looms even after almost a century of its existence! We wonder how many of them came about like that…