Toyota has a long history and a reputation for quality. Learn more about our origins, our leadership, and how our drive for quality goes beyond the world of automobiles.
The history of our company begins in 1937 with the founding of the Toyota Motor Co. Ltd. But did you know the original Toyoda business was in textile weaving in the late 19th century?
Sakichi Toyoda’s success in developing automatic loom technology helped his son Kiichiro to pursue his dream of making vehicles inspired by the new mass-production methods he saw in Europe and the USA. Today we are one of the world’s largest and best-known automobile manufacturing businesses, employing more than 360,000 people and making vehicles in factories on every continent. Our cars and trucks are sold in more than 170 countries and territories. We continually strive to enhance the quality of people’s lives by using our skills and advanced technologies to create great new products and services.
Akio Toyoda became our President and CEO in 2009. A grandson of Kiichiro Toyoda, he represents another generation of the family which founded Toyota Motor Corporation.
He joined the business in 1984 and became a senior managing director in 2003. He has international experience in every level of our automotive operations and played key roles in creating and supervising gazoo.com, and in developing Toyota's business in China, in addition to many other career highlights.
His leadership reflects his great passion for cars and the joy to be had from driving, both on the road and the race track. He is an enthusiastic and experienced racing driver himself and an inspiring force in our commitment to creating ever-better cars for our customers.
We are world-famous for making vehicles, but did you know Toyota is involved in many other business areas? These include making and selling boats and marine engines and producing fork-lift trucks and other industrial equipment. We have been building houses since 1975, developing new building techniques and setting up condominium and rental housing projects as well. The Toyota Housing Corporation was set up in 2004 as a separate company.
We do pioneering work in biotechnology and agriculture, including research into growing sustainable plant-based products we can use in our manufacturing processes as a more environmentally friendly alternative to conventional plastics. Initiatives that support our commitment to protecting the environment and being a responsible business include forest planting schemes in China to prevent land from turning to desert.
Toyota Financial Services provides financial products to help millions of customers worldwide purchase or lease their vehicles. In Japan TFS also provides home loans and credit cards.