Next Generation Toyota RAV4 Tomorrow

Tomorrow, March 28, 2018, all will be revealed! The ALL-NEW 2019 RAV4 will make its international debut at the 2018 New York International Auto Show broadcast on Livestream simultaneously. Stay tuned!

2019 RAV4 Coming Soon

Fifth Generation Toyota RAV4 to Debut at 2018 New York International Auto Show

The all-new, fifth-generation 2019 Toyota RAV4 will make its world debut on Wednesday, March 28, at 8:10 a.m. CST during the 2018 New York International Auto Show. Toyota will livestream the event and we’ll share that footage with you!

Take a look at the RAV4 through the years in the gallery after the jump. Continue reading

The NEW Supra Has Arrived

Toyota Unveils the GR Supra Racing Concept at the Geneva Motor Show

The “will they?” “won’t they” cloud of uncertainty surrounding the production of a new Supra has officially lifted today.

On March 6, 2018, at the Geneva Motor Show, Toyota unveiled the GR Supra Racing Concept. Despite a 16 year gap since the production of a new Supra, the speedster has attracted a new generation of followers thanks to the popular video game Gran Turismo® and the movie franchise The Fast and the Furious.

Created by TOYOTA GAZOO Racing (the international umbrella organization for Toyota’s global sporting program), the GR Supra Racing Concept is a compact, two-door car, with front-engine/rear-wheel drive configuration. The large “90” race number on its doors is a historical reference to Supra’s codename and a big visual clue to the fact that this concept heralds Supra’s return in a fifth generation. (Photos on the next page!)

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Toyota Tops 2018 Consumer Reports Vehicle Picks

Congratulations are in order as Toyota takes the prize for most vehicles on Consumer Reports’ annual “Top Picks” list!

In their annual “Top Vehicle Picks” list, Consumer Reports bestowed four of the top ten picks to Toyota, the most of any car manufacturer. The winners were the Corolla for “Compact Car”, Camry for “Mid-Size Car”, Highlander for “Mid-Size SUV”, and Sienna for “Minivan”.

According to reporting from the USA TODAY, “The consumer magazine’s rankings are closely watched because it is known for being fiercely independent, buying its own cars for reviews at dealerships and tapping thousands of members for information on how their cars have performed.

Consumer Reports credits Toyota’s “dependability, mainstream design and safety,” for its success. Jake Fisher, director of automotive testing for Consumer Reports told USA TODAY:

“Part of what helps Toyota is just really impressive reliability across the board.”

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Amazon’s Alexa Joins the Toyota Team

Toyota announces a new partnership with Amazon’s Alexa service.

January 12, 2018

Toyota announces a new partnership with Amazon, introducing Amazon’s Alexa in Toyota vehicles later this year.

As consumers outfit their homes with “smart” devices at an increasing rate, tech companies ask “where else?” can they implement such technology. The answer? The car.

In a statement made from CES this week, Toyota announced a partnership with Alexa, Amazon’s intelligent cloud-based voice service. Toyota’s with Entune 3.0 App will be the first to host Alexa later this year, followed by additional models in 2019. Toyota’s move is a clear sign that they’re shedding their bland image and gearing up for an innovative and exciting future. 

What is Amazon’s Alexa service?

Per Amazon: Using Alexa is as simple as asking a question. Just ask to play music, read the news, control your smart home, tell and joke and much more! Alexa is designed to make your life easier by letting you voice-control your world. Alexa lives in the cloud so it’s always getting smarter, and updates are delivered automatically. The more you talk to Alexa, the more it adapts to your speech patterns, vocabulary, and personal preferences. 

What Does Alexa’s Addition to Toyota’s Mean for Me?

If you have an Amazon smart device at home that uses Alexa, you’ll be able to utilize those functions you love most from the comfort of your Toyota. Simply say, “Alexa, order me more toilet paper” or “Alexa, read me the news” and Alexa will seamlessly carry out those functions while you sit in rush hour traffic. If you don’t have a device that uses Alexa and you don’t plan on getting one–no worries–this news doesn’t affect you. You probably won’t even notice the button on the vehicle’s startup menu.

Once Toyota releases additional information about Alexa, including specific release dates, I’ll be here to fill you in!

Illinois Braces for Thanksgiving Traffic

Illinois braces for busy traffic Thanksgiving weekend.

Illinois braces for busy traffic Thanksgiving weekend.

Illinois Tollway warns drivers to remain calm and allow for extra time when driving on roadways over Thanksgiving weekend.

Beginning today, Wednesday, November 22, the Illinois Tollway projects 9 million vehicles to hit the roads through Monday, November 27. The busiest day will be Wednesday, November 22, when 1.8 million vehicles are expected to travel the roadways. The Illinois Tollway H.E.L.P. Trucks (Highway Emergency Lane Patrol) will be on standby to assist drivers in unexpected situations such as changing tires, battery boosts, adding coolant, dispensing fuel, transporting customers, moving vehicles away from traffic and calling for backup tow truck assistance. Hours have been extended for H.E.L.P. Trucks through Friday, November 24, to provide aid until midnight.

The Illinois Tollway warns drivers to practice safe driving as the Illinois State Police is expected to heavily patrol the highways Thanksgiving weekend. Police are looking for distracted drivers on their cell phones (it’s illegal to use a hand-held device when driving in Illinois) as well as speeders, drivers and passengers in violation of seatbelt laws, and drivers under the influence of alcohol or an illegal substance.

Motorists are encouraged to dial *999 for help on the highway if their incident doesn’t call for the assistance of police or medics.

The LA Times Reviews the Toyota C-HR

Charles Fleming of the LA Times reviews  C-HR.

Charles Fleming of the LA Times reviews the 2018 Toyota C-HR.

Charles Fleming of the LA Times calls the 2018 Toyota C-HR “A lot of car for the money…a smart choice.”

The 2018 Toyota C-HR isn’t just any crossover in the Toyota family–it is one that drums up excitement by both consumers and automotive enthusiasts. In his review of the 2018 Toyota C-HR, Charles Fleming of the LA Times introduces Toyota’s crossover vehicle as a “welcome addition” to fan favorites like the Corolla, Camry, and RAV4–high praise from the esteemed automotive journalist who recently had the opportunity to test the $3 Million Bugatti Chiron.

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Jimmy Butler Drives a Swagger Wagon

 

What kind of car does Jimmy Butler Drive?

Jimmy Butler is the subject of Lee Jenkins’ latest profile for Sports Illustrated, entitled Don’t Try to Change Jimmy Butler

Lee Jenkins of Sports Illustrated profiles former Chicago Bulls forward (and Marquette alum) Jimmy Butler to discuss, among other things, the NBA All Star’s move to Minnesota, his passionate off-season training and his notorious fondness for country music. The profile provides insight into Jimmy’s mind–shedding light on his struggle to reconcile the past and the present; one a life of luxurious wealth, the other a life fraught with uncertainty and strife. This is best illustrated at the beginning of the piece: 

Most hoop elites are identified by no more than two syllables: LeBron. KD. Steph. Russ. Kawhi. CP. Beard. “I’m always Jimmybutler,” he muses. The formality suits him, a superstar who used to be a sideman and still grapples with the transition. “How is a star treated?” he wonders. “I don’t know. I’m learning like everyone else, and it’s a helluva curve.” Butler flies in a Gulfstream but drives a Toyota minivan with a baby on board sticker across the back, even though he is single with no children.

At the end of the profile, the subject of Butler’s minivan pops up again. Jenkins notes that while Butler trains in Malibu, California over the summer, he drives a Rolls Royce and not a Toyota: 

The Rolls gleams in the parking lot. The minivan is back in Minnesota. “I miss it,” Butler says. “Unfortunately, we have to use this thing just a little longer.” He shrugs with the slightest hint of irony.

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Toyota’s Guardian and Chauffeur Autonomous Vehicle Platform

October 3, 2017

Toyota’s Guardian and Chauffeur Autonomous Vehicle Platform has reached a new stage in development. For the first time, automotive enthusiasts and curious minds alike witness the advancements made the Toyota Research Institute. 

In March 2017, Toyota Research Institute unveiled their Platform 2.0 research vehicle. This vehicle would be the hub for Toyota’s inquest into the world of automated driving. Six months later and Toyota is releasing Platform 2.1 along with a demonstration to show how their technology has progressed over the past few months.

The Platform 2.1 utilizes two driving modes: Chauffeur and Guardian. Under Guardian mode, the human driver maintains vehicle control and the automated driving system operates in parallel, monitoring for potential crash situations and intervening to protect vehicle occupants when needed. Chauffeur mode assumes all vehicle occupants are passengers. This is the mode that’s closest to fully autonomous driving.

To read more about Platform 2.1, click here

Happy National Coffee Day!

The Chicagoland area is celebrating National Coffee Day with freebies. Find out where you can score a cup of joe!

Oh Happy Day! It’s National Coffee Day and some of your favorite coffee spots are handing out freebies. But first, le’s talk about Chicago’s coffee scene. According to WalletHub, Chicago ranks as the 7th best city for coffee in the United States. We’re lucky to live on the southwest side of Chicago because we have some of the city’s BEST coffee shops. These are a few of our favorites. Have we left anything out?! We love supporting our local small businesses so please let us know your favorite local spot to grab a cup of joe. Keep reading for coffee freebies after our local coffee guide…

Chicago’s Best Coffee Spots on the Southwest Side

  1. Beverly Bakery & Cafe: Roasting over 21 coffees from all over the world, this coffee-lover’s heaven specializes in daily small-batch roasting for optimal bean freshness, resulting in a delicious cup of joe!
  2. Bridgeport Coffee Company: A retail and wholesale purveyor of fine coffee beans and roasts on the South Side of Chicago, Bridgeport Coffee Company builds a bridge to the land where your coffee is grown.
  3. Xando Cafe: Come for  a frothy cappuccino or specialty Greek Coffee, stay for Grecian panini. 
  4. Doughs Guys Bakery: Most people head to Doughs Guys for the delicately sweet macaroons and delicious donuts, but we go for the classic cup of black coffee and grab a glazed cinnamon roll for the ride to work. 
  5. Los Pekes Ice Cream & Coffee: Sometimes you need a little sugar to start your day so head to Los Pekes for a sweet caramel latte and give yourself permission to indulge in decadence. 

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