Toyota Launches Inspiring New 'Ideas for Good' Initiative

November 08, 2010
Auto Maker Focuses on Continuous Improvement with Innovative Technologies
 
TORRANCE, Calif., November 8, 2010 – Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), USA, Inc. today announced its new brand campaign, “Ideas for Good,” a unique initiative centered on what the company has been doing for many years—repurposing its innovative automotive technology to benefit society in the non-automotive space. The campaign builds upon Toyota’s DNA of quality, reliability and durability, as well as its commitment to innovation, by inviting consumers to share their own ideas to improve quality of life beyond the automotive world.
 
An extension of Toyota’s enduring commitment towards continuous improvement, the “Ideas for Good” initiative empowers people to imagine new possibilities for Toyota technologies. Beginning today, the public is invited to share ideas on how to repurpose Toyota technology through the “Ideas for Good” program sponsored by Toyota. Consumers are challenged to find new, non-automotive applications for five distinct Toyota technologies to ultimately benefit society.  The public can learn about Toyota’s technologies and how to share their ideas at www.toyota.com/ideasforgood.
 
Submissions--accepted November 8, 2010 through February 28, 2011--will be evaluated by independent judges, and the winners of the challenge have the opportunity to bring their ideas to life by participating in a design session. To inspire innovative new ideas, the initiative will be supported by an advertising campaign highlighting the unique ways Toyota technology has been repurposed, or could be repurposed, to improve other areas of life.
 
“We’re sharing a side of Toyota that many are not aware of and engaging the public in a way we’ve never done before,” said Bill Fay, group vice president of marketing for TMS. “We’re shining a light on some of our revolutionary technologies, which have been used to improve people’s quality of life, in order to encourage the public to help us identify the next big ‘idea for good.’”
 
While Toyota’s innovations inside the car are well known, the company has also developed technologies which transcend that boundary and benefit people in other ways. For example, Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C., is utilizing Toyota’s Total HUman Model for Safety (THUMS) software to study head injuries sustained by football players. THUMS, originally developed to simulate vehicle crash-related injuries, was shared with Wake Forest to allow researchers to model head injuries and study how hits on the football field can affect athletes. Wake Forest researchers hope the THUMS software will help find ways to prevent and treat head injuries, and create even safer football helmets. Recent concern with football-related head injuries has further emphasized the importance of their study.
 
Similarly, when Yellowstone National Park set out to build a new visitor education center, the vision of the design team was to meet the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) environmentally responsible Silver Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification standards.  Toyota encouraged the park to set its goal higher after hosting a tour of the Gold LEED campus headquarters in Torrance, Calif. Toyota shared its environmental-building insights and technology with the park’s architects. Toyota also donated $1 million to the Yellowstone Park Foundation, completing the $15 million of private funding needed to start the construction.  In August, Yellowstone exceeded the Silver goal, achieving a Gold LEED certification by the USGBC.
 
To support the initiative, Toyota’s advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi LA has created a marketing campaign to further demonstrate Toyota’s commitment towards innovation and continuous improvement. The campaign utilizes broadcast, print and online mediums to showcase five Toyota technologies: Total HUman Model for Safety (THUMS), Hybrid Synergy Drive® (HSD), Solar Powered Ventilation System, Touch Tracer Display, and Advanced Parking Guidance System (APGS). The campaign will direct people to an online hub at www.toyota.com/ideasforgood.com, where they can learn more about the technologies listed above. Consumers can share their ideas on the “Ideas for Good” consumer-challenge site for a chance to make them a reality. Additionally, they can view background information on the panel of experts serving as consumer challenge judges: Joel Stitzel, Ph.D. of Wake Forest University; Keith Grossman of WIRED Magazine; Grace Hawthorne of Stanford University Design School; Jake Ward of Popular Science and Josh Morenstein of fuseproject.
 
The online hub will also host case studies and videos that highlight organizations leveraging Toyota technologies to improve consumer experience and well being. These organizations include NASCAR, Yellowstone National Park and Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.
 
“As a leader in quality, Toyota is focused on innovating better cars for a better quality of life,” said Fay. “The campaign inspires new thinking about what Toyota has already been doing for many years. Ultimately, with consumers’ help, we hope to inspire new ways that our innovation can benefit society.”
 
To help inspire viewers’ imaginations, the first of three TV commercials features a real world application of THUMS technology used by Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. The two future commercials will show how Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive and Solar Powered Ventilation System technologies could be repurposed to benefit the community and encourage participation in the “Ideas for Good” challenge. To view the TV commercials, visit the Toyota USA YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/toyota.
 
“Ideas for Good” Featured Technologies
Total HUman Model for Safety (THUMS) – An advanced injury-simulation software that measures more than the conventional crash test dummy can.
 
Hybrid Synergy Drive® (HSD) – HSD converts braking energy into electricity. The hybrid system helps lower emissions while raising mpg.
Solar Powered Ventilation System – The Toyota Prius offers this system that helps keep the interior air temperature near the outside ambient temperature, when the vehicle is parked in direct sun.
 
Touch Tracer Display – An advanced touch-activated display system that allows drivers to control music, temperature and other features from the steering wheel without taking their eyes off the road. Touch Tracer is the first display system in the world to allow steering wheel controls to read out on the instrument panel.
 
Advanced Parking Guidance System (APGS) – Available on the Toyota Prius, this system utilizes ultrasonic sensors in the front and rear bumpers to detect open parking spaces and helps guide the car into those spaces with only soft driver braking.
Learn more about these technologies at www.toyota.com/ideasforgood.
 
About Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc. is the marketing, sales, distribution and customer service arm of Toyota, Lexus and Scion.  Established in 1957, TMS markets products and services through a network of nearly 1,500 Toyota, Lexus and Scion dealers which sold more than 1.77 million vehicles in 2009.  Toyota directly employs nearly 30,000 people in the U.S. and its investment here is currently valued at more than $18 billion.
 
For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyota.com or www.toyotanewsroom.com.
 
About Saatchi & Saatchi LA
Saatchi & Saatchi LA is a full-service agency with both traditional and nontraditional capabilities, including media, creative, strategic planning, 3-D asset creation, design and event marketing. The agency was awarded a prestigious Gold Effie for its highly effective launch of the Toyota Tundra full-size truck. Saatchi LA is agency of record for Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc., and it also serves Toyota Dealer Associations and Toyota Financial Services. The L.A. office is the third largest in the global network of ideas company Saatchi & Saatchi, part of Publicis Groupe. For more information, go to www.saatchila.com.
 
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CONTACTS: 
 
Greg Thome,
Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc.
310.468.3279
greg_thome@toyota.com
 
Jaymie Robinson
Saatchi & Saatchi LA
310.214.6033
jaymie.robinson@saatchila.com
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