Our European story began on a very small scale more than 50 years ago, with the first shipments of our cars to a motoring public who knew little about Toyota, or our products. Since those early days we have enjoyed years of progress and steady growth, to the point where we have nine manufacturing centres across the continent. Today, nearly three out of every four vehicles we sell in Europe were built here, too.
Along the way we have kept pace with customers’ evolving tastes and requirements, increasing our research and design resources here to be sure we produce the kind of cars Europeans want to drive. And we have constantly strived to do things better: offering ever better cars, better reliability and better service.
We have invested more than €9 billion locally in building factories to make our cars, engines and transmissions, to establish technical centres and a thriving design studio and to help our suppliers develop to manufacture the thousands of parts that go into every vehicle. This has created thousands of jobs, not just for our business, but for our network of more than 400 European supplier businesses as well. Having these facilities within Europe means we can offer our customers shorter delivery times and reduce the impact on the environment of our shipping operations.
We recognise that European customers are some of the most discerning in the world and we have used their expectations as a benchmark for designing cars we can be sure meet the highest standards of performance, design and aesthetic appeal, models such as the ground-breaking new Toyota C-HR crossover.
We began researching how to make cars cleaner and more efficient long before it became a headline issue for the auto industry as a whole, investing in hybrid and fuel cell technology.