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mustang84

Target Toyota: Competition heating up

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mustang84    12

A good read...it seems other automakers aren't willing to let Toyota rise to the top without a fight.

http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Colum...rticleId=109823

Target, Toyota: Competitors Try To Trip Up the Carmaker on Its Way to No. 1

Date posted: 04-03-2006

Toyota is wearing a target.

As the Japanese company marches assuredly toward capturing the title of No. 1 automaker in the world, overtaking General Motors, Toyota's competitors are determined not to roll over and play dead, allowing Toyota to cakewalk to the top spot.

Nowhere is it more evident than on the hybrid front. Automakers have joined forces in an effort (unofficially) to block Toyota from world domination. DaimlerChrysler and BMW accepted GM's invitation to cooperate in joint development of hybrid technology, in part to gang up on Toyota, some participants have whispered. The trio is expected to deliver a progress report later this spring. Meantime, Ford reportedly is considering joining the trinity, as it gears up to produce 250,000 hybrids a year by decade's end. Other Asian automakers are said to be considering signing up as well.

GM insiders say Toyota was nosing around about possibly joining the coup, but GM and others suspected Toyota was interested in espionage, not cooperation, sources indicated.

Competitors don't want Toyota dominating hybrid technology, especially battery production. Ford already has accused Toyota of deliberately withholding battery production from it.

Another front quietly brewing against Toyota involves E85 gasoline-ethanol fuel. Should E85 catch on, Chrysler, Ford and GM would have a leg up, having already produced millions of E85-capable vehicles.

Indeed, Toyota is gaining a reputation that GM once had of being arrogant. The view is that Toyota seems to have the attitude that it can do no wrong and bristles at any criticism.

Toyota faces an age issue, being seen as the Buick of the Asian brands. "Younger consumers are going through a phase of 'Not my father's Camry' just as the 1970s and 1980s youth market went through the 'Not my father's Oldsmobile,'" noted the CNW report. The average age of Camry drivers is 48, compared to Hyundai's 39. The report went on: "Younger consumers see Toyota as a brand for older drivers, lacking distinction and peer approval."

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regfootball    234

"The incentive war and GM's price cuts have put Toyotas at a price disadvantage, by thousands. The report noted that despite Toyota's market share gain last year, North American financial returns were flat. At the same time, Toyota's broadening product line has forced higher advertising spending, and dealers are pressuring Toyota for deeper discounts because of local competitive offerings."

This is where I see cars like the Impala potentially cleaning house, if the Camlee goes too high up the price ladder.

Already Camlees and Avalons are seen as very geriatric cars. Rarely do I seen anyone under 50 or 55 driving one (unless they are Asian).

The more Toyota sells in volume, the more it becomes less of an intellectual's brand and the more pressure you get from dealers to feed the monster with sales, lower prices, etc. Then, the pond scum of the earth starts to become available to buy them, then Consumer Reports ratings will start to go down. Then we also see them hitting the fleets.

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CaddyXLR-V    3

Hey if everyone wants to lump the Asians, more specifically Toyota vs the big 3, why not give them what they want. GM, Ford and DCX, working together on technology. Ford and GM already worked together on the 6 speed autos, and now DCX and GM are supposed to have a more advanced hybrid than Toyota. Maybe the media putting the American companies backs against the wall could spark some good technology, and resource sharing between the 3.

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Newbiewar    1

Hey if everyone wants to lump the Asians, more specifically Toyota vs the big 3, why not give them what they want. GM, Ford and DCX, working together on technology. Ford and GM already worked together on the 6 speed autos, and now DCX and GM are supposed to have a more advanced hybrid than Toyota. Maybe the media putting the American companies backs against the wall could spark some good technology, and resource sharing between the 3.

no i think its called adiqutely funded research...

the US market has been cutting corners for years, now its time they accually invest in their future not devest their past...

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FUTURE_OF_GM    26
Toyota is wearing a target.

'Bout F-in' time.... Now if the media would just wake up and put the target on them as well (YEAH RIGHT! They're not domestic so they don't get destroyed... Eventhough, apparently now, according to the company and the media, they ARE american)

As the Japanese company marches assuredly toward capturing the title of No. 1 automaker in the world, overtaking General Motors, Toyota's competitors are determined not to roll over and play dead, allowing Toyota to cakewalk to the top spot.

And THAT'S why Toyota has the media.... To foil resistance.

Nowhere is it more evident than on the hybrid front. Automakers have joined forces in an effort (unofficially) to block Toyota from world domination. DaimlerChrysler and BMW accepted GM's invitation to cooperate in joint development of hybrid technology, in part to gang up on Toyota, some participants have whispered. The trio is expected to deliver a progress report later this spring. Meantime, Ford reportedly is considering joining the trinity, as it gears up to produce 250,000 hybrids a year by decade's end. Other Asian automakers are said to be considering signing up as well.

GOOD DEAL!

GM insiders say Toyota was nosing around about possibly joining the coup, but GM and others suspected Toyota was interested in espionage, not cooperation, sources indicated.

I'M GLAD SOMEONE FINALLY SEES TOYOTA FOR WHAT THEY REALLY ARE... IN ALL THEIR SHADY ASIAN BUSINESS PRACTICES' GLORY!

Competitors don't want Toyota dominating hybrid technology, especially battery production. Ford already has accused Toyota of deliberately withholding battery production from it.

Typical example of those asian business practices.... Nice to your face while they're twisting the knife in your back. NOTICE however, that this never left the newsroom apparently. Had Ford been oing the same thing we would've seen articles BEGGING the consumer to buy Toyota's out of sympathy! (Oh wait, we STILL get those anyway, except for the Honda Ridgeline!)

Another front quietly brewing against Toyota involves E85 gasoline-ethanol fuel. Should E85 catch on, Chrysler, Ford and GM would have a leg up, having already produced millions of E85-capable vehicles. E85 is gaining the support of the U.S. government, members on both sides of the Congressional aisle, and some environmentalists, according to Washington, D.C. sources. Surveys show Americans rank importing less foreign oil higher than environmental concerns. Toyota officials, meantime, have been defensive about praise regarding E85 — and any negative charges against hybrids.

LOL... When GM and Ford were "defensive" about the hybrid myth (And it is a myth) they got destroyed by the media. But not Toyota.... They STILL get the nod despite ripping people off with and UNDER ACHIEVING, UNATTRACTIVE, UNRELIABLE battery beater. Pay $10K more, get 5 more MPG, that's Toyota's business practices and their way of "Benefitting the consumer"

If I were GM and Ford, I'd SEAL UP EVERY contract on E85 that I could and BLOCK Toyota out of the market.

Toyota could face other public relations issues on its quest for No. 1. Two high-profile automotive journalists in Detroit predicted at an informal prognostication in December that it wouldn't be an easy road for Toyota.

Give me a fuc*in' break... Everything has been a walk in the park SO FAR! Why wouldn't the kill shot be easy?!?!?! Toyota didn't really have to do ANYTHING. The media DESTROYED Detroit for them and americans are ever the dumber and ever the more willing to sell out their style of life and history.

It is likely to get shot with arrows on a number of subjects and by a number of parties, they forecasted.

I can't WAIT!!!! But then, I can't help but ask: FROM WHERE?!?!?! The environmentalists are to ignorant and enthralled with the inefficient Prius and Toyota's useless "performance hybrid" programs to NOT be oblivious to Toyota putting out more INEFFICIENT trucks than anyone else.... The government couldn't care less. Hell, they were trying to SELL OUR PORTS to the enemy for god's sake and they've proven OVER AND OVER again that they do not care if Detroit lives or dies. As long as Toyota has $$$, then the government is on board. The economists?!?!? YEAH RIGHT!!! They've ALREADY ushered GM out and Toyota in as the "leading american auto company" and they're glossing over the impact of a bankrupt Detroit BY THE DAY as an out of sight/out of mind deal. HIDING the obvious implications from the consumer by saying that expanison by Toyota and Co. will more than offset the millions of workers effected by the destruction of GM and Ford. The media?!?!?! WHAT-EVER!!!!! We BOTH know that isn't happening... So that leaves the consumer, and I think we ALL know how they feel! Just look at the anti-GM sentiment FOSTERED by the opinion makers and Toyota sales to see.

Indeed, Toyota is gaining a reputation that GM once had of being arrogant. The view is that Toyota seems to have the attitude that it can do no wrong and bristles at any criticism.

YA THINK?!?!?!?!

Other factors suggest Toyota's journey will be no walk in the park. CNW Marketing Research, the Bandon, Oregon, automotive research firm, recently listed in its monthly newsletter 15 issues facing Toyota.

While the domestics and Germans battle to hold their ground, Korean automakers Hyundai and Kia are attacking Toyota "from a second front," introducing vehicles directly aimed at Toyotas but "at significantly lower prices and with near-Toyota quality"

First of all, I love how the media has automatically given the Koreans credit for "NEAR TOYOTA" quality but even after years of HIGHER domestic quality ratings *STILL* will not acknowledge their gains.

and naming their competitor in ads. Case in point is the recently introduced Hyundai Azera, aimed squarely at the Toyota Avalon. Inside Line, in fact, picked the Azera over the Avalon in comparison.

I enjoy this and if Detroit ever goes under WILL support the Koreans with all my worth!

Toyota faces an age issue, being seen as the Buick of the Asian brands. "Younger consumers are going through a phase of 'Not my father's Camry' just as the 1970s and 1980s youth market went through the 'Not my father's Oldsmobile,'" noted the CNW report. The average age of Camry drivers is 48, compared to Hyundai's 39. The report went on: "Younger consumers see Toyota as a brand for older drivers, lacking distinction and peer approval."

THANK GOD!!!!!!! SOMEONE FINALLY SEES THIS BESIDES ME!!!!!! MORE OLD PEOPLE DRIVE TOYOTAS THAN ANY OTHER CAR!!!

Even Scion, despite its sales success, is attracting older buyers. The average buyer age for the boxy xB has climbed dramatically because drivers over 65 find it a perfect low-cost, roomy, fuel-efficient lifestyle vehicle as younger consumers seek more performance.

That's because only ONE Scion actually has style.... The xblob abd xtoaster might be a cool ride of choice for the white trash trailer queen that wants something NEON and different or the "hasn't got a clue" YUPPIE BOOMER who has always wanted to buy something actually sporty and appealing but is disgusted by the image trauma associated with not buying a Toyota, but they aren't cool to MOST youth.

Not every Toyota is a hit, including the Matrix and the current Tundra, with key audiences. The Tundra is aimed at the "appearance" segment, not the macho rancher-farmer/towing/contractor crowd, a problem being addressed with the next-generation Tundra.

And the Echo.... And the Celica... And mostly ALL of the 80's Toyota's.... And the Previa.... And the Toyota vans that spontaneously combusted back in the day. Forgot about ll those failures didn't we?!?!?!

The women's market, the report notes, is becoming less practical and more emotional, an area in which Toyota lags (though company officials take offense at any notion that their vehicles lack soul). The Ford Fusion has a 55-percent female primary driver penetration. Of them, approximately 40 percent had a Toyota on their shopping list, according to CNW studies.

A Toyota vehicle has about as much soul as that pile of crap my dog left on my neighbors lawn yesterday.

Economics play a role as well. The Internet has made consumers aware of competitive pricing, competitive features and competitive quality/safety. The public assumes Toyota scores highest on all counts. "Mystique and reality collide. This was the undoing of VW in 2002-2005," notes CNW. Consumers also recognize repair costs are higher.

Funny how THE MEDIA hasn't clued in on this.... Or, better yet, had the sac-o-nuts to say something about it... Oh wait, that would be counter to the agenda!

"General economics have seen household incomes rise while discounted and distinctive (fashion statement) products now appeal to all income groups. That pushed the high-line Camry intenders into Lexus (and other near luxury) models much akin to what happened to Ford's Taurus audience," the report says.

Yep... It's becoming ever more apparent that Toyota is making Lexus irrelevant... CASE IN POINT: a 30K Camry.

The incentive war and GM's price cuts have put Toyotas at a price disadvantage, by thousands. The report noted that despite Toyota's market share gain last year, North American financial returns were flat. At the same time, Toyota's broadening product line has forced higher advertising spending, and dealers are pressuring Toyota for deeper discounts because of local competitive offerings.

IT WORKED!!!!! THIS IS WHY I PUSHED FOR THE PRICE WAR SO MUCH! NOW HOPEFULLY, AS A RESULT TOYOTA WILL START TO DECLINE IN QUALITY AND PROFIT.

Despite these challenges, CNW sees no decline in Toyota sales, "not by a long shot." The firm concludes that "unlike the Big Three past and present, Toyota recognizes at least most of these issues and is actively confronting them."

Oh really?!?!?! How so????? Let's see:

1) The Koreans.

How is Toyota combating these companies again.... By raising the prices of all it's vehicles??? That seems logical.

2) The age issue.

Wasn't Scion supposed to be the fix for this?!?!?! Apparently IT didn't work. Does Toyota have youth oriented models in the pipeline?!?! Not that I know of... Well, there is the Yaris, but I'd be willing to bet that most of those will find homes in RETIREMENT COMMUNITIES.

3) Not everything is a hit.

THis is only going to get worse as the market and competition get better... Ford and GM have obviously finally woken up (Of course the media will take care of them though) The europeans STILL carry way more prestige than anything from the land of the sun and the Koreans have only just begun. Not to mention the impending Chinese (Which hate Japanese) attack.

4) Women buyers.

How are they addressing this? With more emotional designs?!?! Toyota couldn't make an emotional design if it smacked them in the grille. "T-Face" and "L-finess" look TERRIBLY similar, ill proportioned and just plain cheap when it comes to details... HARDLY an emotional breakthrough.

5) The quality/safety truth.

This is only going to get worse as Toyota's image is SLOWLY chipped away. Not to mention with the company straining because of flat finances as well as GROWTH quality is DESTINED to hit a brick wall one way or the other... Then the question is; how long can Toyota coast on their reputation??? VW didn't cost long. Mercedes has been coasting, but now is running out of 'image' steam.

6) The intertwining of luxury offerings and plebian offerings.

How is Toyota addressing this problem?!?! Like it or not thy're making Lexus irrelevant one model at a time. They're increasing prices on Toyota's (A sales problem as well) and increasing refinement and features as well. You can essentially get Lexus quality and equipment in a Toyota that is cheaper, but not by much, and this is WIDELY KNOWN. At what point does it just become a huge game of badge engineering??? And at what point is the consumer going to get fed up with just paying for a badge?!?!? (Eventhough is is the prick-tabulous, "L" badge)

7) Incentives:

Welcome to GM's world of dealer dissent!!! How is Toyota addressing this?!?! Definately NOT with the newest models which have higher prices than ever. More advertising??? Not that I know of. Incentives? Yep, somewhat, and we ALL know what incentives do!!! Maybe Toyota is BLOATING their prices to prepare for incentives.... We all know how well that served GM.

Buyers clearly are voting with their wallets by buying ever more vehicles from Toyota, ensuring Toyota will hit the bull's eye in the next few years.

OF COURSE!!!! The media will see to it!!! And they'll continue to condition the naive consumer that domestics are inferior when in fact they are FAR and AWAY superior.

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