Published on August 29th, 2016 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez


Toyota Team Members Tackle the Terrain of Latin America for Product Improvement

Toyota kicked off the third leg of the Five Continents Driving Project in Latin America. For the next three and a half months, Toyota’s employees hailing from Japan and the local affiliates will work closely together to take on a variety of severe driving conditions of the continent. In this project, the employees will take on the steering wheel, and experience on site driving on the Latin American terrains, where they can better understand the conditions which our customers face every day. This is in line with the principle of genchi genbutsu, or hands-on knowledge of the situation on the ground.


Toyota conducted the first leg of the project in Australia in 2014. By taking on the continent’s diverse roads which cover approximately 20,000 kilometres of desert tracks and other tough terrain among others, a team of 80 Toyota employees who had participated were able to gain critical insight where they were able to understand, and gather essential observations for the making of cars, which cannot be derived simply from driving cars on test courses.


In 2015, another team consisting of around 140 Toyota employees tackled a variety of terrains totalling approximately 28,000 kilometres across North America. The team, which was divided into two seasons; summer and winter, had learnt what cars needed in order to operate under severe opposing driving conditions, such as through the relentless heat of the Death Valley, to the unforgiving arctic climes of Alaska and Canada.


This year, for the third leg of the Five Continents Driving Project, Toyota employees will be divided into three teams to complete approximately 20,000 kilometers in total distance. By crossing the borders of seven countries, and through experiencing the diverse cultures and climates, the team will take on a variety of severe driving conditions of the continent.


For Toyota GAZOO Racing, the Five Continents Driving Project is directed toward the development of personnel―one of the important pillars in motorsports. Toyota will continue the project, in tandem with 340,000 global Toyota employees, to strive towards the united goal of making customers smile through the making of ever-better cars. The year 2020, when the Tokyo Olympic Games will be held, has been identified as the target year for the completion of the projects.


Driving Project in Latin America

 DurationAround three and half months, starting August 22 (Monday)
 RouteApproximately 20,000 kilometers in total across the following countries

Team 1
Brazil and Paraguay (August 22 through mid-September)

Team 2
Chile, Peru, and Bolivia (late-September through late-October)

Team 3
Argentina and Uruguay (early-November through early-December)

 Vehicles  involvedNine models, including the locally-produced such as Hilux, SW4 (Fortuner), and Etios, for each team
 EmployeesApproximately 110 consisting of employees from Toyota Motor Corporation and local affiliates

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