As prepared for:
2016 Chicago Auto Show
2017 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro Debut
Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016
Bill Fay, Toyota Group Vice President and General Manager
Thank you so much for joining us today.
The automotive industry is clearly celebrating some exciting times right now!
Quite possibly the most impressive news … has been the growth of the total light truck market …which surged to nearly 60% of the overall industry last year …a trend that Toyota expects will continue through 2016 … and beyond.
Last year we recorded our BEST ever year in light trucks …and we think 2016 will be even bigger.
We’re gearing up for this growth …adding more production this year at our San Antonio and Baja plants …improving availability and overall sales volume in the segment.
Customers are loving their Toyota trucks …not only for their legendary …quality, durability, and reliability …but because they allow them to go anywhere …and have plenty of fun getting there.
Two years ago … right here at the Chicago Auto Show …we introduced the TRD Pro family … a new line of Toyota vehicles designed to satisfy enthusiasts …that require the ultimate in off-road capability.
Inspired by Toyota Racing Development’s 35-year history of accomplishments …in desert off-road racing … and its heritage of terrain conquering vehicles … the TRD Pro — Tacoma, Tundra and 4Runner – have been an enormous hit … quickly becoming the most sought after Toyotas at dealerships.
Even now … the available 2016 4Runner and Tundra TRD Pros are pretty much sold as soon as they roll off of the delivery truck!
In 2014 …the experts at Petersen’s 4-Wheel and Off-Road …tested the toughest off-road vehicles in a grueling comparison …and the 4Runner TRD Pro came out on top …winning 4×4 of the year!
Just one year later …they did the same with the all-new Tacoma …and it also was crowned 4×4 of the year!
We're starting to see a trend here!
As much as we love to win trophies … what really excites us about the TRD Pro family …is what it's accomplished for Toyota.
- Allowed us to reach a younger, more affluent and educated buyer,
- It has created a halo effect …increasing consideration for Tundra, Tacoma, and 4Runner,
- TRD accessories have seen a significant sales increase across the lineup.
- And most importantly …it has generated lots of Toyota brand excitement.
After all … nothing spells "Let’s Go Places" like TRD Pro.
Now … there's no doubt that the new Tacoma is a BEAST …but holding true to Akio Toyoda’s vision of ever better cars …Chief Engineers Mike Sweers and Araya-San along with their team … searched for ways to raise the bar yet again …and they nailed it!
Ladies and gentlemen …the 2017 Tacoma TRD Pro!
This truck looks awesome!
The TRD Pro will no doubt …stand out on the trail …with exclusive exterior features like its:
- headlights and taillights with blacked-out inner housings …and matching hood scoop,
- TRD Pro badging,
- and of course …heritage-inspired TOYOTA grille.
Adding function to its form …the TRD Pro also comes with:
- Rigid Industries LED fog lights that will light up any path,
- 16-inch TRD black alloy wheels with an aggressive offset that widens the track by an inch … giving the truck a more powerful stance,
- And Goodyear Wrangler all-terrain tires that are reinforced with Kevlar for better off-road performance.
I didn’t think the new Tacoma could get any tougher …but this TRD Pro takes it to a whole new level.
The TRD Pro is equipped with one of the most high-performance …off-road suspension systems ever to be offered on a production vehicle …specifically tuned by TRD:
- Up front, 2.5-inch Fox coil-overs are paired with TRD springs …bringing it up an additional inch.
- Out back, Fox 2.5-inch shocks with remote reservoirs are paired with TRD leaf springs.
- All shocks feature aluminum construction and internal bypass technology that helps adapt to any terrain …on and off the road …providing an exciting and predictable ride everywhere the TRD Pro goes.
When the going gets tough …adventurers can be confident knowing that the TRD Pro comes standard with features like:
- Four-wheel drive with an Auto LSD,
- Crawl Control and Multi-Terrain Select
- Locking rear differential
- And a ¼-inch thick aluminum skid plate.
Despite its rugged exterior …the TRD Pro’s interior is refined with black leather-trimmed heated front seats …and a TRD Pro shift knob …and packed with technology like a multi-info display that sends vehicle lean and pitch angles …and many more features that owners will love.
The 2017 Tacoma TRD Pro will be available as a double cab …with a choice of a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic …and they will ALL be built at our plant in San Antonio.
We will continue to offer the TRD Pro 4Runner and Tundra in 2017…now in this exclusive color called Cement …as well as …Barcelona Red and Super White.
We can’t wait to see the reaction from the enthusiasts …when they go on sale later this year!
I’d like to switch gears for a minute …and talk about one of the core pillars of TRD … racing.
Just last year …we clinched our first NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship.
We also swept both the NHRA Top Fuel and Funny Car Championships.
And in 2014 … the TRD Pro Tundra won its class in the Baja 1000.
But you might not be aware of our latest addition to the Toyota racing family.
I’d like to introduce Ryan Millen …and his 2016 RAV4 SE Rally.
As you know … the compact SUV segment is one of the hottest in the industry …and we felt the need to add some heat of our own.
Last year was our first shake down year … and Ryan won 4 out of 5 races.
Not bad …especially considering that this RAV4 features a stock engine and automatic transmission.
Be on the lookout for the RAV4 Rally team as it will make its stop at several North American events throughout the year.
Who knows …in the future …you just might find some of that TRD racing magic trickle down to a special production RAV4.
That would be awesome!
If you’re looking for a way to keep warm in this frigid Chicago weather … we’re giving away these cozy TRD Pro trapper hats.
To get one … just snap a picture of the new Tacoma …and post it to your favorite social platform …and use the "TRDPro" hashtag.
Chief Engineer, Mike Sweers, and I will be up here to answer any questions that you might have.
Thank you so much for joining us today.