Toyota’s $1 Billion Investment in AI About More than Autonomous Driving



Early this November, Toyota announced the creation of the Toyota Research Institute in Silicon Valley, a business unit especially designed to develop AI solutions to help make vehicles safer. The TRI represents a $1 billion investment over the next 5 years, in addition to the $50 million the automaker has already invested in Stanford University and MIT. But Toyota has tapped Gill Pratt, the well-known roboticist previously in charge of DARPA’s Robotics Challenge, to oversee the project, so TRI’s advancements won’t be limited just to vehicles.

Take assisting the elderly, for example. Toyota has specifically expressed its desire to create assistive technology to help people in their homes, which is why it’s working on developing the Human Support Robot (pictured above). As Pratt says, “There’s been an enormous expansion in interest in manufacturing and assistive technologies. What they have in common with each other and with autonomous driving is this notion that at some level robotic systems will be working with people. Autonomous driving is actually the more difficult problem because you have to contend with a completely unpredictable environment.”

Structured environments like factories are fairly easy for robots to handle, as every thing has its designated place and vice versa. A situation like the open road on the other hand, can vary from relatively ordered (stop-and-go traffic) to a variety of sudden hazards (birds flying across the road, inattentive fellow drivers, etc.). In developing systems to help the elderly, Toyota’s AI are better able to understand human behaviors and motivations. Such an environment is relatively stable, with some low-risk changes interspersed throughout due to human activity. Martial Hebert, Director of the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, offers as an example a person reaching for a cup.

“Suppose I have a robot in my workspace. It will need to observe my hand moving, understand that it is moving in a forward direction along a trajectory, and therefore understand that, given what it knows about the environment, my hand is going to grab a cup. If it knows that, the robot can make much deeper decisions about how to stay out of my space or how to help me. You can clearly see how you can transfer that capability to manufacturing, to assistive technologies, and to autonomous driving.”

Frankly, we’re very excited here at Roseville Toyota about the TRI, and we expect to see great things to come from it in years to come. To learn more about Toyota’s latest technological advances, be sure to call, contact us online, or just stop by by the dealership and test-drive one of our current Toyota models.

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2016 Toyota RAV4 to be Offered in Hybrid Model


As the company that brings you the Prius, it should come as no surprise to anyone that Toyota offers an extensive lineup of hybrids, currently composed of seven different models. In the near future, however, that number will increase to eight, when the 2016 RAV4 Hybrid hits the market. At an estimated 33 mpg combined, the RAV4 hybrid brings together fuel efficiency and power, and we at Roseville Toyota are very excited about the perks of this new hybrid offering.

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Toyota Reveals 3 Concept Vehicles at Tokyo Motor Show

Concept vehicles, by and large, are a way for automakers to show off new technologies, try daring experiments, and gauge interest in future vehicles. You can never quite tell what to expect from a concept vehicle, which is why we here at Roseville Toyota are proud to announce that the company has debuted three new concept vehicles at the Tokyo Motor Show.

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Toyota Goes Back to the Future with the Mirai, Tacoma


In case you missed it, October 1st, 2015 was “Back to the Future Day,” the day that Marty McFly hopped in Doc Brown’s time-traveling DeLorean and went to the land of Jaws 19, Pepsi Perfect, and hoverboards, AKA the year 2015. While we don’t have any flying cars on our lot here at Roseville Toyota, we do have some pretty futuristic vehicles. That’s we’re so excited about Toyota’s tie-in video to the movies, which stars Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, the Toyota Mirai, and a movie-inspired Tacoma pickup.

Check out the video for yourself here:

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Toyota is Calling All Innovators to Onramp Conference


On November 13 at AT&T Park in San Francisco, Toyota is hosting a one-day conference called Toyota Onramp. The conference is designed for innovators, investors, and car enthusiasts in Silicon Valley to work with Toyota and strive for a more complete emission-free driving technology. Roseville Toyota has all of the details on how you can get involved.

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What to Consider When Considering Starting a Business

businessman handshake, group of peopleThe freedom to start your own business is one aspect of the American Dream that captivates many aspiring entrepreneurs. While the idea may in some ways be overwhelming, starting your own business is a more attainable goal than many people realize. If you are thinking about starting your own business, here are several important tips to consider from Roseville Toyota. Continue reading

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Explore Toyota’s Fascinating History with Roseville Toyota

toyoda history imageSince Toyota’s founding in 1937, the company has set records, won awards, and won over generations of drivers with affordable, practical models and high-performance supercars alike. At Roseville Toyota, we’re here to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision about which Toyota vehicle is right for you.

We do more than just sell Toyota vehicles, though—we’re also Toyota trivia experts. You may not need to know some of these fun facts, but we’re happy to share them—and anything else you need to know when it comes to finding your next vehicle. Continue reading

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Toyota is USHCC Corporation of the Year

toyota red logo featuredWe at Roseville Toyota know how involved Toyota Motor North America is in its communities, but it’s always nice to have someone else recognize that involvement as well. That’s why we’re so excited Toyota was selected “Corporation of the Year” by the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC), distinguishing our automaker as a corporation that has advocated for Hispanic business. This recognition further shows that diversity and inclusion activities help both corporations and the communities in which they are located.

“As the world’s top automaker, Toyota demonstrates that global industry leaders can empower minorities while building a profitable business model,” said Javier Palomarez, USHCC president and CEO. “By constructing their vehicles where they sell them, Toyota supports local suppliers and economies. We look forward to their continued partnership with the Hispanic business community.” Continue reading

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The 2016 Toyota Yaris is Detail-Oriented

2016 Toyota YarisBuilding on the extensive updates applied to the Yaris for the 2015 model year, the 2016 Toyota Yaris features a European design highlighted by new details and slight changes throughout the vehicle. Roseville Toyota has the latest details on what the new Yaris has to offer and why we’re so excited for its upcoming arrival.

The most obvious change right off the bat is the two new color combinations being offered to customers: Barcelona Red or Crushed Ice with a Black Sand Pearl roof, both adding to the European element. Once inside the vehicle and on the road, the incredibly quiet ride becomes obvious. An acoustic glass windshield and sound-absorbing and insulating materials placed throughout the car help to silence any distracting or annoying sounds your car or the roads could be making. Further sound insulation materials block outside noise and prevent engine noise from entering the cabin. Continue reading

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Roseville Toyota Safety Guide: Why Young Children Shouldn’t Ride in the Front Seat

young girl sitting in backseat of carAt Roseville Toyota, many of our team members are parents—so we get it. You spend your life worrying about your child. You worry about how they’ll navigate the first day of second grade or if that kid who likes to eat spiders ever washes his hands. Your life is a crazy quilt of worries, and the last thing you should have to worry about is a safety device injuring your child. But that’s what can happen if you don’t make sure your kids ride in the back seat. This guide from Roseville Toyota explains why young children should not ride in the front seat. Continue reading

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