Toyota Innovates For the Future


In a recent address, Akio Toyoda spoke of transforming the company that bears his family name from an automaker into a mobility company. The goal has been for Toyota’s engineers and scientists to be able to expand their research and development efforts to include mobility solutions and technology in their research for several years. The results of their continuous improvement of existing technology and innovation of new solutions has resulted in many advances for the company. It has also generated a lot of patents. A lot.

Just how many is a lot? In 2017, Toyota was awarded 2,015 patents by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. That’s the most of any automaker. In fact, this is the fourth year in a row that Toyota has been awarded more patents than any other automobile manufacturer.

Toyota’s engineers, researchers and scientists are constantly at work developing everything from breakthrough mobility technology to advanced fuel cell systems. This work, and the resulting patents, make Toyota one of the top 14 most innovative companies too. This puts them in the same company as technology leaders like IBM, Apple and Microsoft.

But innovation isn’t new for Toyota. In fact, Toyota has always been an innovative company. Toyota’s origin story begins when Sakichi Toyoda, father of Toyota founder Kiichiro Toyoda, was awarded the first Toyoda patent in 1891 for of all things, a weaving loom design.  By 1984, the first year IPO published its Top Patents list, Toyota was already in the top 25. Throughout the years, Toyota’s place on that list has moved around a bit, but by 2003, Toyota has been awarded more patents (14,215) than any other automaker.

Certainly, while having the most number of patents is a great achievement, it is not Toyota’s goal. Instead, the goal remains the same today as it was when Sakichi Toyoda received the company’s very first patent- To build things that improve society. Patents are simply evidence of the hard work and innovation along the way.

Want to learn more about the innovation and hard work that Toyota uses to create the technology found in their vehicles? Contact us at Toyota of Greenville to test drive one of these technologically incredible vehicles today.

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