Toyota is arguably the biggest automaker on the planet and this isn’t just because it provides a lot of value in its cars. In fact, the company is also ahead of the game due to the amount of research and development that it puts effort and investments in. This is why we hear about upcoming Toyota technologies all the time.
The company is making all sorts of progress in the areas of convenience and efficiency. We’ll be talking about two technologies that are in development and they cover the aforementioned areas in one way or the other. We could see these features make their way to the vehicles in Toyota’s dealerships in a matter of time.
- AI-Powered Speech and Voice Assistance
The first technology here is a joint development project by Toyota and Google, two of the biggest companies in existence. Toyota is working with the search engine company to develop an all-new voice assistance setup for itself and its high-end subsidiary, Lexus. This will use machine learning languages to convert your voice into text.
Now, we currently have voice assistance in many of the new cars being sold, so how is this technology going to be any different? Well, according to the Toyota Newsroom, this tech won’t require the internet to be used. Due to this, the driver will be able to use the technology in remote areas where there’s a lack of internet reception.
All of this will be possible due to the cloud storage saving your existing voice commands so that they can be used in the future. The new system also won’t need a lot of computing power to get the job done. And on top of all that, the quality of the system will be better than all the VA technology that’s available right now.
Toyota is all about working on computerized technology such as the above-mentioned AI-powered VA tech and cybersecurity systems as well. Speaking of the latter, they recently did a CyberAuto Challenge in order to enhance the concept of cybersecurity in cars since there’s a lot of usage of the internet and cloud technology among drivers that is at risk now.
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- Fuel Cell Tech for Trucks
One of the biggest truckmakers in the world is Kenworth and Toyota has recently collaborated with them. The two companies have worked together on the ZANZEFF Project, a partnership that was based on the research and development of hydrogen fuel cell technology to be used on trucks. The project has been reported by Toyota to be a successful venture.
The two groups were aiming to develop technology that could not only make large commercial trucks free from any carbon emissions, but they also focused on bringing high performance to the mix. The truck that they’ve worked on reportedly has a carbon-free hydrogen-powered range of more than 300 miles when completely fueled up and loaded to its maximum capacity.
One of the highlights of this venture is the short fuelling time that they’ve achieved. One of these large trucks can take as less as 15 minutes to be fuelled up and be ready to travel up to hundreds of miles. This is quicker than the perceived time for a completely electrified truck. As a result, we can expect these machines to complete several shifts – all in a day’s work.
According to Toyota, it was them who designed the powertrain and everything else to do with it. This is because the company has a lot of experience in the area as it was they who made the fuel-cell-powered Toyota Mirai which is one of the very first FCEVs to be sold to the general public. Meanwhile, it was Kenworth who came up with the truck’s design.
Ten of these all-new trucks have been put to real-time testing by actual consumers and companies for day-to-day operations. They used it for all sorts of logistics operations and were very successful in doing so. With these trucks in regular usage, we could definitely be seeing quite a drop in the emissions of greenhouse gases due to commercial ports and other usage.
As we know, Toyota is working harder than all of its peers combined when it comes to hydrogen power. Not only have they been working on the hydrogen-combustion Yaris, they are also working with NREL to develop hydrogen fuel-supplying generators. At the same time, they’re also bringing out EVs. It just goes to show how ahead they are of the game.