ANN ARBOR, Mich. (July 5, 2013) — The United States Patent and Trademark Office issued more patents to Toyota’s innovative designers and engineers in 2012 than to any other automaker, according to a recently-released survey by the Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO). The 1,491 patents issued to Toyota companies demonstrate Toyota’s commitment to ever better cars that achieve new environmental, safety and technological advancements.
“Since the days of Toyota’s founding, innovation has been a cornerstone of Toyota’s success,” said Kristin Tabar, vice president, electrical systems engineering, Toyota Technical Center (TTC), a division of Toyota Engineering and Manufacturing, Inc. (TEMA). “We’re driven to listen to our customers and develop new ways to improve their experience.”
Toyota companies received thirty percent more patents in 2012 than the previous year, illustrating the company’s increasing success in fostering ingenuity and keeping a keen focus on the customer.
Whether it’s creating “smart materials” that can help cars resist insect splatter or improving vehicle communication systems, Toyota leads the way in anticipating and engineering the cars of tomorrow for today.
The Toyota Technical Center, located in Ann Arbor and Saline, Michigan, recently held their annual patent awards ceremony to honor last year’s patent recipients. Two team members each received their 20th patent in 2012, Minjuan Zhang, manager, Toyota Research Institute NA (TRINA) and Charan Lota, manager, electronic systems at Toyota Technical Center (TTC).
“Toyota is a great place to be an inventor,” said Ms. Zhang. “Everyone here is passionate about improving the customer’s experience and it shows in the product.”
“You can tell a lot about a company by the new ideas they generate,” said Mr. Lota. “And, what these patents show about Toyota is that we are never going to stop trying to make better cars.”
Toyota (NYSE:TM) established operations in North America in 1957. Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc. supports 14 manufacturing plants. Toyota directly employs nearly 39,000 people in North America and its investment here is currently valued at more than $24.5 billion, including sales and manufacturing operations, research and development, financial services and design. Toyota's annual purchasing of parts, materials, goods and services from North American suppliers totals nearly $30 billion. Toyota currently produces 12 vehicles in North America, including the Avalon, Camry, Corolla, Highlander, Matrix, RAV4, Sienna, Sequoia, Tacoma, Tundra, Venza and the Lexus RX 350. For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyota.com or www.toyotanewsroom.com.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc.