Toyota: 1st model ever



Toyota logo 1935-1936
Toyota logo
first version: "Toyoda"
1935-36
Prototype name: "Toyoda A1"

First models names:
--- "Toyoda AA" (sedan)
--- "Toyoda AB Phaeton" (cabriolet)

Category: Cars

Subcategory:
--- Sedan (AA)
--- Cabriolet (AB)

Producer: Automobile Department of Toyoda Automatic Loom Works, Ltd. (founded in 1926 by Sakichi Toyoda - director: his son Kiichiro Toyoda)

Prototype made in: May 1935 (engine completed on September 25, 1934)

Production start: April 1936 - Koromo, Japan

Discontinued: 1943 (AA) - 1938 (AB)

First price: 3,350 yen (AA) - 3,300 yen (AB)

Features: The Toyoda Model AA incorporated the design principles that were current in the U.S., the global leader of the auto industry at the time. Specifically, it was modeled after the De Soto Airflow, which embodied Chrysler's pioneering design approach to improve the ride comfort of rear passengers. The streamlined body styling and the rational load balancing between the front and rear wheels resulted in superior ride comfort for rear passengers and a spacious cabin. Curb mass (kg) 1500. Dimensions (mm): Length 1500, Width 1736, Height 1730, Wheelbase 2850. The engine, modeled after that of the Chevrolet, was a 3,389 cc water-cooled inline 6-cylinder OHV unit that produced 65 hp/3,000 rpm.
The Toyoda Model AB Phaeton was an open-top version of the Model AA. Although it was a commercially available production model, most of the vehicles were painted in khaki and delivered to the Japanese army with the codename ABR, and few were sold to civilians. While the mechanical components were basically the same as those of the Model AA, its coachwork was more than just that of a roofless AA sedan. The windshield was different from the AA's, and the rear-hinged rear doors were replaced with front-hinged ones. Also, the rear seats were moved further back to provide space for auxiliary seats between the front and rear seats.

Interesting facts: In 1924, Sakichi Toyoda invented the Toyoda Model G Automatic Loom. The principle of jidoka, which means the machine stops itself when a problem occurs, became later a part of the Toyota Production System. Looms were built on a small production line. In 1929, the patent for the automatic loom was sold to a British company, generating the starting capital for the automobile development. Toyota was started in 1933 as a division of Toyoda Automatic Loom Works devoted to the production of automobiles under the direction of the founder's son, Kiichiro Toyoda. The first prototype engine was completed on September 25, 1934. Three A1 prototypes car were completed in May 1935, none of them survive. Because the Model AA were developed at the automobile department of the Toyoda Automatic Loom Works, Ltd. (before the department was spun off as Toyota Motor Company), the model names were preceded by the brand name Toyoda. In April 1936, Model AA passenger car production commenced. In July, the company ran a public competition to design a new logo, which lead - in September - to a change in the brand name to what is now called "Toyota". In 1937, Toyota Motor Co., Ltd. was established to commence full-scale auto manufacturing operations; in 1942 a total of 1,404 Toyota AA and 353 units of Toyoda AB Phaeton were produced.

Quote (Sakichi Toyoda): «Before you say you can't do something, try it».

Property: © Toyota Motor Corporation

Producer website: http://www.toyota-global.com

Toyoda Model A engine
Toyoda Model A engine. The first prototype engine was completed on September 25, 1934. The parts manufactured in-house were limited to cast parts including a cylinder head, cylinder block, and pistons, while imported Chevrolet parts were used for crankshafts, camshafts, valves, plugs and electrical components.

Toyoda A1 prototype
Toyoda A1 prototype, completion ceremony (May 1935). Development started in September 1933, three A1 prototypes were realized, none of them survive.

Toyoda AA sedan 1936
Toyoda AA sedan, the first production passenger car by Toyota (1936)

Toyoda AA - original - front-left
Toyoda AA - original - left
Toyoda AA - original - back-left
Toyoda AA - original - back
Toyoda AA - original - inside-left
Toyoda AA - original - inside-right
Toyoda AA sedan, the only known pre-War original that exists in the world today. Found in Russia in 2008, it is kept in the Louwman Museum in the Netherlands.

Toyota AA - 1987 replica
Toyoda AA sedan, a replica build for the 50th birthday of Toyota Motor Corp. (1987)

Toyota AB Phaeton - 1936
Toyota AB Phaeton - replica - right
Toyota AB Phaeton - replica - left
Toyoda AB Phaeton (1936-1938), original and replica. The Toyoda Model AB Phaeton was a cabriolet version of the Model AA. Although it was a commercially available production model, most of the vehicles were painted in khaki and delivered to the Japanese army with the codename ABR, and few were sold to civilians.

Sakichi Toyoda and his son Kiichiro Toyoda
Sakichi Toyoda (Kosai, Feb. 14, 1867 - Kosai, Oct. 30, 1930), the Japanese inventor and industrialist who founded Toyoda Automatic Loom Works, Ltd. (Toyota Industries Corporation), and his son Kiichiro Toyoda (Shizuoka, June 11, 1894 - Toyota, March 27, 1952), entrepreneur and first director of the automobile department (Toyota Motor Corporation).

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