Categories
Toyota of Abilene Listicles

Selecting the Century’s Best Super Bowl Car Commercial

The tables are set for Sunday’s Super Bowl LVIIII (Super Bowl 58, if you skipped class the day they taught Roman numerals). The Kansas City Chiefs, led by quarterback Patrick Mahomes, are aiming to become the first team to win back-to-back Super Bowls since the 2004 Patriots. But the San Francisco 49ers seek to avenge their loss to Kansas City in Super Bowl LIV (54) and are itching to take home the Lombardi Trophy for the first time since the 1994 season.

And as usual, in between the pigskin pageantry, we have the commercials.

Super Bowl commercials have long occupied their own sphere in our pop culture landscape. Many Americans claim they look forward to the commercials more than the game itself, though that mentality has dropped off in recent years. That’s due in part to the game itself becoming generally more competitive than it used to be, but also because of the commercials becoming available for viewing well before kickoff. If you want to see this year’s crop of Super Bowl commercials, chances are you can hop online now and knock them out a week in advance.

For the first 30-40 years of the Super Bowl, auto brands admittedly didn’t leave a significant cultural impact with their ads. From “Mean Joe Greene” (Coke) to “1984” (Apple), the most iconic commercials came courtesy of other industries. But as the century turned and our cars became more tech-integrated, their corresponding commercials became more ambitious. Some modern Super Bowl spots are downright cinematic.

We’ve selected a handful of worthy finalists for the title of best Super Bowl car commercial of the century. Before declaring a winner, here are some of the nominees we considered.

Disqualified: Honda – “Yearbook” (2017), Toyota – “Jessica Long” (2021)

In 2017, Honda maxed out their celebrity Rolodex, enlisting A-listers from Jimmy Kimmel to Missy Elliott to dispense life advice straight from the pages of their old high school yearbooks. It’s a fun concept, even as it sticks to the unfortunate trend of celebrity overreliance that Super Bowl ads have succumbed to recently. The larger issue is that it has little (if anything) to do with Honda – or cars in general. The same goes for Toyota’s 2021’s submission, which showcased swimmer Jessica Long’s inspiring leap from adoption to the Olympic stage.

We’re all for car companies pushing the boundaries with creativity. But to be considered among the industry’s top car ad, there needs to be at least the hint of a car involved.

The Nominees:

Audi – “The Chase” (2009) / Kia – “The Truth” (2014)

Hollywood and the auto industry have long maintained a successful working relationship. This dates back to the days of Steve McQueen racing his Ford Mustang through the streets of San Francisco in 1969’s Bullit. For their 2009 Super Bowl commercial, Audi celebrated of the art of the car chase. It placed rising action star Jason Statham – best known for the Transporter and Crank film franchises at the time – behind the wheel of an Audi, unleashing the English enforcer on various locales in a chase sequence medley.

Speaking of action movies, 2014 felt like the sweet spot for Matrix nostalgia. We were just over a decade removed from the generally disappointing, trilogy capper Matrix Revolutions and nearly that far away from the more divisive comeback Matrix Resurrections. Kia correctly wagered that audiences were ready to return to the world of dark glasses and leather jackets. They recruited Laurence Fisburne for their 2014 Super Bowl commercial, in which his Morpheus character reveals the hidden world of luxury cars. Gravity-defying visuals (and opera music) ensue.

Ultimately, Kia and Audi both arrived at the same conclusion: it’s hard to go wrong with the surefire combination of cars and action films.

Hyundai – “First Date” (2016)

Is it that much of a stretch to call this one of Kevin Hart’s most convincing performances? The comedian is endearingly determined as an overprotective father in this 2016 ad. When his daughter is picked up for date night, Hart utilizes Hyundai’s Car Finder technology to essentially stalk the young couple throughout the evening. (Not to worry: its escalating absurdity puts it firmly in the realm of Dad Fantasy). It hasn’t proven memorable enough to be crowned our winner, but it does raise intriguing questions about the state of privacy in a tech-first society. Maybe they could have explored that idea more – if each 30-second block of Super Bowl ad time didn’t cost an average of seven-million dollars.

Hyundai – “Smaht Pahk” (2020)

Is making fun of Boston accents low-hanging fruit? Of course. Is it also an entirely justifiable American tradition? Absolutely. In another inspired Hyundai commercial, native Bostonians Chris Evans and Rachel Dratch break out their best bad regional dialects. Fellow Bay Stater John Krasinski then joins the party to showcase the Sonata’s new Remote Smart Parking Assist feature. Red Sox legend David Ortiz pops up at the end – because of course he does – and even Big Papi finds himself impressed by the Sonata’s self-pahking capability.

Kia – “Robo Dog” (2022)

Kia’s spot for its all-electric EV6, centered around a robot dog, deserves a nomination for being centered around a robot dog. The circuital canine itself hits all the right beats, but did we need another commercial soundtracked to Bonnie Taylor’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart”?

Honorable Mention: Walmart – “Famous Cars” (2019)

This 2019 ad brings together famous pop culture cars – from the Batmobile to Jurassic Park‘s tour vehicles – in the world’s most chaotic Walmart parking lot. It’s a colorful piece of nostalgia bait, and it all comes courtesy of… not an auto manufacturer, but Walmart. Given that our IP-driven culture is so oversaturated with these types of multiversal crossovers these days, we’re saving the gold medal for a more creative (though still IP-based) selection.

The Winner: Volkswagen – “The Force” (2011)

For better or worse, Volkswagen’s landmark 2011 commercial changed the way we watch Super Bowl commercials. A week ahead of the big event, Volkswagen opted to launch their Star Wars-themed advertisement on the web. By kickoff, it had already racked up millions of views on YouTube. Since then, nearly every Super Bowl advertiser has followed the same tactic.

Still, Volkswagen’s marketing approach shouldn’t overshadow the charm of the ad, which still captivates 13 years later. The commercial features a mini Darth Vader in action, trying to manipulate everyday objects with The Force, sans any dialogue. The endearing little Sith Lord manages to seemingly influence a 2012 Passat parked in their driveway… albeit with an inconspicuous assist from Dad’s key fob.

Accompanied by John Williams’ legendary score, the ad achieves a classic feel as our little Vader grapples with his unexpected power. In an age where cutting-edge technology began weaving its way deeper into our vehicles, Volkswagen confidently suggested that our cars could truly spark a sense of wonder.

We Are the Champions

Here in Abilene, we’ll have to wait another off-season to see if the Cowboys made the right move in bringing back head coach Mike McCarthy. But regardless of whether you have a rooting interest in this year’s Super Bowl – or are just tuning in to see if Taylor Swift can make it back from Tokyo in time for kickoff – know that Lithia Toyota of Abilene is working tirelessly on a winning game plan. If you’re even entertaining the thought of another dealership, audible instead into an exciting new Toyota, such as the 2024 Camry Hybrid or the new Corolla Hatchback. Let the winning team have Disney World; more lasting rewards await you at Lithia Toyota of Abilene.

Categories
Toyota of Abilene Maintenance Tips

Five Early Warning Signs You Need New Brakes

It’s a new year, which unfortunately means your car is officially one model year older. That also means your brakes have amassed another year of wear and tear.

Gaging the the state of your brakes can be tricky, but by staying vigilant for the subtle signals they send you, you can get ahead of any costly estimates your vehicle stands to inherit this year. Recognizing these signs and moving quickly to address them can also greatly extend your vehicle’s lifespan. 

Courtesy of the service technicians at Lithia Toyota of Abilene, here are five warning signs that suggest it’s time to replace your brake pads or rotors.

High-Pitched Screeching 

Often, you hear brake problems before you see or feel them. That’s thanks to the high-pitched screeching sound that emits from your brake pads when they’re wearing thin. Interestingly, the screeching isn’t a direct result of wearing brakes; manufacturers intentionally insert a piece of metal into the brake pads in order to alert you when a replacement is imminent.

If the grating sounds continue despite new brake pads, there’s a chance that your rotors may be glazed. This occurs when metal heats up and burns due to excessive braking. Check your rotors for blue marks for a dark ring; either could indicate that the rotors also need replacement. 

If the squealing is replaced by a grinding, metallic noise, that means your brake pads have completely worn down past the point where replacing them is possible. Take it to us for brake service immediately if this sound emerges, as it could lead to larger safety issues. 

The Eye Test 

Sometimes it’s easier not to overthink things. If your brake pads look like they have a problem, they likely do. You can find them wedged between the wheels’ spokes, pressed up against the rotors. Measure the pads, and if you find they’re less than a quarter of an inch thick, it may be time to schedule a service appointment with us.

Performance Anomalies 

When your brakes stop responding as quickly as they should, it may be a sign of a leak in your braking system. If your brakes are sending out vibrations (the kind that causes your steering wheel to quake, not the Beach Boys kind), either the brake pads or rotors are in need of replacement.

Your brakes are always sending messages like these to alert you to their condition. The more in tune you are with your vehicle, the better you’ll become at assessing when and why your vehicle is behaving abnormally. 

Extreme Sensitivity 

Perhaps you started your Camry today only to find your brakes acting unusually sensitive, jerking you to a halt at the slightest tap of the brake pad. This could be due to either the rotors wearing down unevenly or the brake fluid needing replacement. 

Alternately, you might have a problem when your brakes prove too insensitive and only engage when you apply excessive pressure. This could be a symptom of low brake fluid, thin brake pads, or even a sign that something is amiss with your car’s hydraulic system.

Puddle of Doom 

The last thing you want to see on a bright, sunny day is a puddle formed beneath your idle car. Unless it’s residue from an overnight shower, it’s most likely your brake fluid dripping out of your car due to a leak. You should be able to tell the difference between regular motor oil and brake fluid, which is notably thinner. 

Give Me a Brake

Life may be full of stops and starts… but you should have as much autonomy over them as possible. Don’t leave your fate to the whims of worn-out brake pads, glazed rotors, or a faulty hydraulic system. We’re here to assist you with all your brake needs, along with battery service, oil changes, and more.

Visit us at Lithia Toyota of Abilene today, where we never put the brakes on a good deal. With our extensive inventory of new and certified pre-owned vehicles at your disposal, your dream car is just a stop away.

Categories
New Toyota Vehicle

The Toyota Tacoma Levels Up for 2024

The Toyota Tacoma has long been regarded as one of the sturdiest midsize pickup trucks on the market. However, it seems the Tacoma is no longer content with resting on the laurels of its reliability. Enter the 2024 Toyota Tacoma, which has received a notable glow-up, emerging as a faster, stronger vehicle by every measure.

At first glance, it may appear that little has changed with this year’s Tacoma. But while its cosmetic upgrades are subtle, this Tacoma is an feat of engineering ambition. In terms of comfort, performance, and technology, the 2024 Tacoma is a complete evolution from previous models. 

Overhauled and Ready to Haul 

The changes in the latest Tacoma may not be fully apparent when you see it, but you’ll detect them once you get behind the wheel. It sports a new i-Force turbocharged four-cylinder engine. With the same 278 horsepower, this 2.4-liter engine replicates the power output of the 3.5-liter V-6 it’s replacing. Additionally, the i-Force engine redistributes the torque dramatically, as the Tacoma is now able to hit 317 lb.-ft. from as low as 1,700 rpm. For the first time, the Tacoma feels nimble.

Most impressively, the midsize truck doesn’t sacrifice its hauling and towing numbers for the sake of its enhanced performance. If anything, the Tacoma’s payload ratings have also been elevated, now up to 1,447 – a 300-lb. improvement from the 2023 model. Towing, meanwhile, remains consistent with previous numbers at 6,400 pounds. 

And the Tacoma TRD Off-Road excels when it comes to off-road adventuring, as it’s able to easily traverse any terrain. From sand dunes to deep mud to uneven, rocky surfaces, there isn’t a challenge the newest Tacoma isn’t equipped to face. 

A Brand New Beast 

The cosmetic and interior changes to the new Tacoma may be less apparent than its performance enhancements… but that doesn’t mean they aren’t significant. For one, it marks the debut of Toyota’s new Audio Multimedia System, which runs alongside standard wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The high-mounted, 14-inch touchscreen features conveniently large app icons, perfect for on-the-move tapping.

The interior is noticeably more spacious than past models, with more lenient headspace for taller drivers. For a more decadent experience, consider the Premium package, which includes additional interior features such as:

  • Heated power front seats. 
  • A heated steering wheel. 
  • A sunroof. 
  • Surround-view camera system. 
  • 10-speaker JBL audio system. 

Drive a New Ride Into 2024

The Toyota Tacoma will continue to be known for its world-class reliability – but that’s no longer its sole, defining feature. By addressing and upgrading the Tacoma’s performance, driving dynamics, hauling, technology, and interior cabin, Toyota has created an evolved truck that looks like the 2023 Tacoma… but feels like the future.

Here at Lithia Toyota of Abilene, an evolutionary driving experience awaits you regardless of the type of vehicle you prefer, from the sporty 2024 GR Supra to the family-friendly 2024 Sienna. Abilene’s preeminent Toyota dealership also has you covered when it comes to servicing your current vehicle. Whether you need tires, brakes, batteries, or an oil change, we’ll keep you on the road until you’re ready for your next new car-buying adventure. 

Categories
New Toyota Vehicle

Checking in on the Toyota Corolla Cross

When Toyota unveiled their compact crossover SUV the Corolla Cross hybrid in 2020, it seemed to fill a logical hole in Toyota’s SUV lineup. Longer and wider than the subcompact C-HR and taller than the Corolla hatchback, the Cross was more akin to a hybrid version of the RAV4.

The Corolla Cross rolled out alongside a new Toyota motto: “everyday, reinvented.” Taken at face value, the slogan seems to promise excitement; here is a vehicle so dynamic that it has the capacity to change the very fabric of virtually any day.

But with nearly a half decade of hindsight, it’s easy to look at that motto another way. The Corolla Cross was never designed to reinvent life itself. Rather, it was meant to literally reinvent your everyday routine, offering a sustained measure of practicality that took all that was burdensome about life’s day-to-day trials and streamlined it.

Recently, MotorTrend completed their yearlong test review of the 2022 Corolla Cross. In the end, they also arrived at the same descriptor: practicality. Let’s look at where the Corolla Cross stands and where it figures to go from here.

The Year-Long Findings

Although the Corolla series launched way back in 1966, the Corolla Cross was the very first hybrid crossover introduced to Toyota’s lineup. Initially, it was powered by a standard 1.8-liter inline-four with 138 horsepower and 130 lb-ft of torque.

After spending a year with the 2022 Corolla Cross, MotorTrend kept coming back to the little details that coalesced into a practical whole: the enormous trunk and cargo capacity, the rubber floor mats, the wireless charger-storing cubby beneath the HVAC controls.

The magazine also praised the Corolla Cross’s lifetime fuel economy of 29 mpg, citing minimal spending at the pump and low maintenance costs. In terms of fuel economy, the Corolla Cross comfortably outpaced rivals such as the CX-30, Soul, and Mazda 3.

And while the Corolla Cross admittedly offered little in the way of surprises, MotorTrend deemed it a great fit for daily commutes and errands, as its slight frame made parking in tight spots painless.

Crossing Into 2024

Toyota has been a key part of the global movement towards electrification since its outset, and the latest edition of its crossover hybrid continues their green effort.

Since the 2022 model, the Corolla Cross has added standard all-wheel drive. Its engine has been upgraded to a 2.0-liter four-cylinder, with three electric motors combining for 196 horsepower. For the 2024 model, the Corolla Cross SE and XSE trims receive updated wireless smartphone charging pads.

Though changes to the Cross have been incremental, its foundation has held solid. You’ll still find the same affordable starting price, the same level of fuel efficiency, and the same level of dependability.

Sometimes it’s better to know what to expect when tackling everyday life. The overtly practical Corolla Cross hybrid is peace of mind on four wheels. And as we get an early look at the redesigned 2025 model, it doesn’t appear as though that core philosophy is changing, regardless of how sleek the Cross becomes.

Your Next Toyota Experience Awaits

The new year is upon us, and that means it’s time for resolutions. In 2024, resolve to get behind the wheel of a new or used Toyota vehicle. Whether you’re interested in the Cross, new models such as the 2024 Toyota Tundra, or just in need of an oil change, Lithia Toyota of Abilene is here to keep for all your practical – and occasionally indulgent – auto needs.

Categories
Toyota of Abilene Maintenance Tips

A Guide to EV Tire Buying and Maintenance

The rise in popularity of electric vehicles can be attributed to various factors, such as a growing focus on environmental sustainability and increased availability of charging infrastructure. However, if we had to identify a single key factor, it would be the significant improvement in range capacity. Initial versions of EVs were constrained by limitations in battery technology, resulting in limited distances before requiring a recharge. Nowadays, the average range of electric vehicles has expanded substantially, spanning from 250 to 500 miles.

Just like with regular gas vehicles, there are many factors that can affect your car’s performance. But when it comes to maximizing the range of your electric vehicle, your tires play a major role. EVs perform at their best when the car and tires work together seamlessly, so when you’re in the market for EV tires, it’s important to consider their compatibility.

In this guide, Lithia Toyota of Abilene helps optimize your range by explaining what you need to know about EV tires. 

Switching From Your Original Tires: The Risks 

Keep in mind that the tires initially installed on your electric vehicle were specially developed for that specific car. EV manufacturers understand the unique requirements of their vehicles, so the tires are designed to maximize range while maintaining preferred performance.

With that being said, each and every car owner has their own personal preference when it comes to the accessories they choose for their vehicle. It’s completely fine to trade in your tires for ones that better suit your taste, but it’s important to be mindful of the potential performance changes that may result from such a switch.

Let’s say you want tires that provide better grip to improve performance and braking. This might come at the cost of a quieter driving experience, which is usually what you want in an electric vehicle. Plus, if you decide to switch to different tires than the ones designed for your EV, you risk reducing the vehicle’s range. On the other hand, if you go for tires with low wear to increase the range, you might notice a drop in performance.

Finding the perfect balance is definitely achievable. However, switching to different tires comes with its own set of unforeseen problems, diverging from the recommended EV tires. Reach out to our tire experts, who will guide you in selecting the ideal option that caters to both your needs and your EV.

Watch Your Tires’ PSI 

If you’ve ever owned a gas-powered car, you probably know that having low tire pressure can lead to increased fuel consumption. And the same idea applies to electric vehicles. Even a small decrease in PSI can greatly affect the rolling resistance of your EV, which directly impacts its range. That’s why many EV owners choose low friction tires—they decrease rolling resistance and enhance range, efficiency, and sustainability.

When it gets colder in winter, it’s crucial to keep in mind that tire air pressure fluctuates more. Make a point to check your car’s PSI levels at least once a month during this winter period, and even more often if possible. If you notice consistently low PSI levels, you might want to think about getting a portable tire inflator to keep at home.

And if issues still arise or persist, make an appointment with our Service Department as soon as possible.

Put a Charge in Your Life 

Here at Lithia Toyota of Abilene, we pride ourselves in being at the forefront of modern ingenuity, with electric vehicles and hybrids ranging from the 2023 Toyota Crown to the Sequoia to the Prius.

Whether you’re looking to join the EV revolution or are interested in our entire, vast inventory of new and used vehicles, we have everything you need to help you roll smoothly into 2024 and beyond.

Categories
Awards

The 2024 Toyota Prius is MotorTrend’s Car of the Year

For the first time in two decades, the Toyota Prius has been named MotorTrend’s Car of the Year. Toyota claims the coveted Golden Calipers award for the first time since the 2007 Toyota Camry, and 20 years after the trailblazing 2004 Toyota Prius earned the title. 

The magazine has a set of six specific criteria it uses to judge its Car of the Year finalists, so it speaks to the complete, well-rounded nature of the 2024 Prius that it was able to take home this year’s top honors. It also does so in a year that marks the 75th anniversary of Cadillac claiming MotorTrend’s inaugural Car of the Year award in 1949. 

To commemorate the moment, Lithia Toyota of Abilene looks back at 2004’s winner and where the Prius stands today.

2004 

When Toyota initially developed the Prius, their vision was to create the “car of the 21st century.” The fully realized version of the Prius arrived four years after the turn of the century, ready to claim that mantle. The 2004 Prius was a complete redesign of the previous generations of Kia, replacing the Toyota Hybrid System (THS) with the superior Hybrid Synergy Drive (HSD). 

The 2004 Prius became the first hybrid vehicle to claim MotorTrend’s year-end award – a bold choice at the time, and the magazine knew it. Then-editor-in-chief, Kevin Smith, wrote in 2004, “We realize the selection of a hybrid vehicle is going to stir controversy, but we believe the performance, engineering advancements, and overall significance of the Toyota Prius merits the distinction of Motor Trend’s Car of the Year.” 

In presenting the 2023 award, MotorTrend notes, “It’s remarkable how much we wrote about that game-changing 2004 Prius that still applies to its Car of the Year-winning successor two decades later.” They’re not wrong; just as it was in 2004, the Prius remains the gold standard for the combination of fuel efficiency, ultra-low emissions, safety, and riveting performance. 

2024

MotorTrend is quick to point out that it in winning Car of the Year, the 2024 Prius “has made a cultural impact far greater than its carbon footprint.” As we enter 2024, Prius drivers have certainly become associated with more than Toyota’s green-first initiatives: nerds, ride-hail drivers, virtue-signalers… even music snobs celebrated when the hybrid car got a shout-out in a certified Charli XCX banger from 2019. 

But if your primary criticism of the hybrid is that it’s an entryway to chique hipsterdom, that means the vehicle itself is probably doing a lot of things right. MotorTrend praises the 2024 Prius for its design, boosted efficiency, and perhaps most importantly, the way it’s helped advance “the automotive state of the art without forcing drivers to change their deeply ingrained habits.” 

It was the 2024 model’s newfound mesh of style and performance, however, that may have separated it from all-electric competitors like the Hyundai Ioniq 6 and the Tesla Model 3 Highland. For the first time since the 2004 model, Toyota designers and engineers had total freedom to completely reimagine the Prius, which led to a modern 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, larger motors and batteries, and all-wheel drive available at launch. 

In claiming top honors, the 2024 Prius emerged from a competitive group of finalists: the 2023 BMW 7 Series, the 2023 BMW M2, the 2024 Lucid Air, and the aforementioned 2024 Hyundai Ioniq 6 and 2024 Tesla Model 3. 

Get Behind the Wheel of a Prius Today 

Clearly, there’s never been a better time to be a Prius owner. Lithia Toyota is Abilene’s number one dealership when you’re making the switch to hybrid or all-electric. Check out more info on the 2023 Toyota Prius and other hybrid/plug-in/electric vehicles, as well as our entire inventory of new and used Toyotas.

The Prius could very well take home its third pair of Golden Calipers 20 years from now, but for the time being, it’s established itself as the model of consistency in the automotive world. The only question remaining is how high the Prius’s ceiling can possibly rise. This New Year’s, make it your resolution to roll into 2024 with the best car on the market, the Toyota Prius. 

Categories
New Toyota Vehicle

The New RAV4 Prime is the Hybrid of Choice

Having to make a choice can be a daunting proposition – but having the freedom to choose is part of what makes life special. From what you prepare for breakfast to what TV series you decide to stream before bed, our daily routines consist of a string of simple choices that coalesce to grant us the gift of autonomy within our own lives. 

Toyota understands that freedom of choice is a critical component to enjoying life. With the 2024 RAV4 Prime, Toyota is packaging that freedom in the form of a plug-in hybrid, compact SUV. With multiple ways to drive, two unique and sporty grades, and ever-expanding charging options, you’ve never been more in control of your driving destiny. 

Two Ways to Drive 

The RAV4 Prime is a true hybrid-electric fusion, offering two adaptable methods of transport capable of swapping between one another on the fly, depending on what the driver’s day entails. Its Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) powertrain enables the RAV4 Prime to be driven as an efficient hybrid on long journeys. For short trips and daily commutes, EV-only mode can be enabled, which eliminates all carbon emissions while offering the driver a manufacturer-estimated 42 miles of range. 

No special equipment is required for home charging. (Though the available level 2 charger can shave charging time from 12 hours to less than three, it does require a home installation.) Plugging the RAV4 Prime into a standard outlet overnight recharges its 18.1kWh lithium-ion battery pack, enabling the RAV4 to remain in EV mode during your commute. When charging outlets can’t be accessed, never fear – the RAV4 Prime can continue onwards as a hybrid.

Together, these two power sources compile four modes of hybrid system operation: 

  • EV Mode: relies solely on onboard battery to power vehicle. 
  • HV/EV Auto Mode: relies on electric-only mode to conserve fuel and reduce emissions while automatically turning on gas engine when needed. 
  • HV Mode: automatically switches between gas engine and electric motor. 
  • Charge Mode: RAV4 runs exclusively on 2.5L engine while the battery charges. 

Performance of a Lifetime 

Regardless of which driving mode you prefer, the RAV4 Prime was built with performance in mind first and foremost. 302 net combined horsepower makes it one of the fastest models in Toyota’s lineup, capable of reaching 60 MPH in just 5.5 seconds. The RAV4 Prime includes standard electric on-demand all-wheel drive, with a separate rear-mounted electric motor powering the real wheels when needed.

The 2024 RAV 4 will come in two sporty grades: the SE and XSE. The standard list of equipment and features for the SE includes: 

  • Heated front seats 
  • 8-way power driver’s seat with lumbar adjustment 
  • 7-inch Multi-Information Display 
  • Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert 
  • 8-inch Toyota Audio Multimedia touchscreen 

Meanwhile, the XSE comes equipped with: 

  • Exclusive 19-inch two-tone alloy wheels 
  • Vertical LED accent lights 
  • 10.5-inch Toyota Audio Multimedia touchscreen display with JBL speakers including subwoofer and amplifier is standard on the XSE grade. 
  • 12.3-inch digital Multi-Information Display (MID) with customizable settings

Charging Ahead 

Last week, Toyota announced a new agreement with Tesla, furthering its commitment to the electric vehicle market. As part of the deal, Toyota will adopt the North American Charging Standard on its battery vehicles starting in 2025. This will give Toyota drivers expanded access to over 12,000 Tesla Superchargers across North America.  

Add in the over 84,000 charging ports in North America Toyota users already have access to – including level 2 and DC fast charges – and the Toyota charging network has never been more all-encompassing.

It’s Prime Time 

Seamlessly blending powerful performance, SUV capabilities, roomy interior comfort, and multiple driving methods, the 2024 RAV4 Prime is the vehicle for the driver who wants a little bit of everything. Why agonize over choosing your next vehicle when you can select the one hybrid capable of identifying and acclimating to your specific, daily needs? 

Here at Lithia Toyota of Abilene, we’re your leaders for all things EV. Stop by today and check out our inventory of new and used hybrids today. At Lithia Toyota of Abilene, the choice will always be yours – we’re just looking to help make that choice a little easier.

Categories
Texas Toyota

The Five Best Dishes to Make for the Holidays

The holidays are a time for family, friends and of course, food! If you’re looking to impress your guests this year, try one of these five delicious holiday dishes. From traditional classics to festive twists on old favorites, there’s something for everyone. So what are you waiting for? Pick a dish from this list and get to cooking!

Roast Beef with Roasted Potatoes and Carrots

Roast beef with roasted potatoes and carrots is the quintessential holiday dish – nothing quite says “celebration” like a home-cooked seasonal feast. This traditional combination of savory flavors has become part of family gatherings across generations, satisfying taste buds and tummies in memorable ways. As holidays come and go, one thing is certain: a warm plateful of roast beef paired with mouth-watering potatoes and carrots makes us all feel right at home!

Turkey with Stuffing and Cranberry Sauce

The holidays are the perfect time for celebrating with family and friends, and one delicious way to get everyone together is with a delicious spread of turkey with stuffing and cranberry sauce. A holiday favorite, a perfectly roasted turkey with stuffing and cranberry sauce is an easy way to bring everyone together and make a memorable holiday. From the salty stuffing and juicy turkey to the sweetness of the cranberry, nobody can resist such a delicious and comforting dish. If turkey and stuffing is making your mouth water, break out your family’s favorite recipes, fill your plate up high – and don’t forget to save room for seconds!

Ham with Green Beans and Sweet Potatoes

Ham with green beans and sweet potatoes is a family favorite for any holiday celebration. Not only does it make for an impressive presentation at family gatherings, but the delicious combination of flavors will have everyone wanting more – melt-in-your-mouth ham, savory green beans, and sumptuously sweet potatoes! A dish like this is sure to spread happiness and merry vibes no matter what kind of family gathering it’s included in. Plus, its ease of preparation means more time for family bonding over a meal prepared with love!

Salmon with Rice and Steamed Vegetables

Salmon with rice and steamed vegetables is a delicious alternative option that is perfect for holiday gatherings. Whether you’re sharing a meal with a pescatarian or just want to shake things up for the holidays, this delicious and healthy dish has something for everyone.

With its hint of sweetness from the salmon, nuttiness from the rice, and bright flavor from the vegetables all melding together in one delightful bite – you won’t be able to resist going back for seconds. Not only does this dish look beautiful on your table but it tastes just as amazing too. As an added bonus, it’s incredibly easy to prepare – so you can spend more time with your family instead of slaving away in the kitchen!

Vegetarian Lasagna

Who says that you can’t have a holiday dish without meat? Vegetarian lasagna is a delicious alternative to traditional lasagna and is sure to make heads turn at your family gathering or holiday celebration. It’s an incredibly flavorful and healthy alternative to standard recipes, and its versatility allows you to improvise based on what ingredients are available. So when it’s time for that next big celebration, consider swapping in vegetarian lasagna instead! Your friends and family will rave about its flavor.

It’s Time to Cook

No matter what you choose to make, with one of these five dishes your guests are sure to be impressed. After all, who can say no to a classic roast beef or a delicious vegetarian lasagna? From turkey and stuffing to ham and green beans, there’s something for everyone on this list. So get cooking and enjoy the holiday season!

Categories
Toyota News

Toyota Announces $2.5 Billion Expansion of North Carolina Plant with 350 Additional Jobs and BEV Battery Capacity

Toyota’s global investment climbs up to $5.6 billion, supporting electrification efforts

LIBERTY, N.C. (Aug. 31, 2022) – Toyota announced an additional investment of $2.5 billion in its newest North American facility, Toyota Battery Manufacturing North Carolina (TBMNC). This investment adds capacity to support battery electric vehicle (BEV) battery production and adds 350 jobs, bringing the total employment to approximately 2,100. Scheduled to begin production in 2025, the facility will produce batteries for hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) and BEVs.

Last year, Toyota Motor Corporation announced a global investment of approximately $70 billion (8 trillion JPY*) for electrification efforts. Today, as part of this aspirational goal, TMC announced a future battery production commitment of up to $5.6 billion (730 billion JPY), which includes the new North Carolina investment.  

“This marks another significant milestone for our company,” said Norm Bafunnosenior vice president, Unit Manufacturing and Engineering at Toyota Motor North America. “This plant will serve a central role in Toyota’s leadership toward a fully electrified future and will help us meet our goal of carbon neutrality in our vehicles and global operations by 2035.” 

In 2021, Toyota, in partnership with Toyota Tsusho, announced the new Liberty location with an initial investment of $1.29 billion for battery production and the creation of 1,750 new jobs. With today’s announcement, TBMNC’s total investment is $3.8 billion. 

“This is an exciting time for Toyota, the region and the many North Carolinians we will soon employ, said Sean Suggs, TBMNC president. “This incremental investment reflects our continued commitment to ensuring jobs and future economic growth for the Triad region.”  

Join the Team
Toyota North Carolina is seeking motivated individuals to join its leadership team. To view and apply for open positions, visit www.toyota.com/careers. Production and maintenance employee positions will be available in early 2023. 

* Based on December 2021 Yen-Dollar exchange rate 

About Toyota  

Toyota (NYSE:TM) has been a part of the cultural fabric in North America for more than 60 years, and is committed to advancing sustainable, next-generation mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands, plus our more than 1,800 dealerships.   

Toyota directly employs more than 48,000 people in North America who have contributed to the design, engineering, and assembly of nearly 43 million cars and trucks at our 13 manufacturing plants.  By 2025, Toyota’s 14th plant in North Carolina will begin to manufacture automotive batteries for electrified vehicles.  With more electrified vehicles on the road than any other automaker, more than a quarter of the company’s 2021 North American sales were electrified. 

Through the Start Your Impossible campaign, Toyota highlights the way it partners with community, civic, academic and governmental organizations to address our society’s most pressing mobility challenges. We believe that when people are free to move, anything is possible. For more information about Toyota, visit www.ToyotaNewsroom.com.

Source Article: Toyota Newsroom

Categories
Texas Toyota

4 Tips to Keep Your Car Looking Great

Whether you’re a car enthusiast or simply a daily driver, keeping your car clean is always a must. While it may seem like a daunting task to keep your car clean, it truly isn’t, especially with our Toyota of Abilene helpful car cleaning tips.

As with any chore, the more you keep up with cleaning your car, the easier it is to maintain. That is why we recommend regularly cleaning out your car, vacuuming it and keeping it free of trash and debris.

When it comes to keeping the exterior of your car looking great, regular washes and waxes will go a long way. Maintaining your car’s paint is a great way to ensure your vehicle won’t have rust or peeling problems. The best part is that it keeps your car looking great too.

With this list of helpful tips, you’ll have all the tools and knowledge you need to keep your car looking just as great as it did the day you bought it.

Clear it Out

The first step to cleaning your car like the pros is pretty simple — clear it out! Trash, debris, last week’s hamburger wrapper, you’ll want to get rid of it all. Clearing out the clutter from the interior of your car instantly makes it look better and a lot less “lived in”. Plus, if you had enough stuff in there, you could consider it as fuel savings to clean it all out.

Not only is interior clutter unsightly, but it can also be dangerous. If you’re ever in an accident, every item you have on the interior will be tossed around becoming a hazard to you. Plus, who wants to be coated in a two-day-old soda after getting in an accident?

Cleaning out the interior of your car is the easiest step, all you need are some trash bags and you’ll be clutter-free in no time. Once you’ve cleaned out the interior of your car, you can move on to our next step detailed below.

Scrub it Out

Just like the carpet and flooring in our homes, the floor mats in our cars can get pretty dirty. That’s why it’s important for you to pull them out of the car and give them a good scrubbing. Getting your floor mats nice and clean doesn’t just look good, it also will help cut down on airborne bacteria and irritants too.

Before you get to scrubbing, you may also want to give your floor mats thorough vacuuming. This will get the dirt and debris that has found its way into your car and been compacted down. Once you’re done vacuuming you can get to scrubbing.

You’ll want a good brush with semi-firm bristles to attack carpet floor mats, and a good cleaning agent as well. If you have rubber or “all-weather” floor mats, you can skip the vacuum step and just give them a good spray down with your chosen cleaning agent.

Vacuum it Out

If you have been following our steps thus far, you should have your vacuum out still, so why not tackle the rest of the interior with it? Thoroughly vacuum all carpeted surfaces in your car, including the passenger and rear-seat floorboards, especially if they see high traffic.

While you have the vacuum out, it’s probably a good idea to run it over any non-carpeted surfaces that accumulate dust and debris like the dashboard. You can even hit the vents as dust accumulates there and can cause allergies or irritation.

A solid vacuum job should leave your car’s interior looking fresh and smelling even better — so why not take the time and do your car a favor?

Wipe it Out

A final step to cleaning your car like a pro is wiping it out. Pick up some interior cleaning and detailing wipes and get to work! We recommend starting from the driver’s seat, hitting all the instrumentation and surfaces you touch most.

From there, we say no amount of attention to detail is too much. Dig into those cracks and crevices, don’t be afraid to really get in there. You can use things like Q-Tips to get into tight spaces like between the air vents or radio controls. Work your way throughout the front first, then make a move to the back of the car — don’t forget the cupholders!

Get to Cleaning

Now that you have read our list of tips to keep your car clean like the pros, it’s time to grab your cleaning supplies and get to work. Whether you’re going for full interior and exterior detail or keeping it simple with a wash and wax, this list of tips is sure to get you started on the right path.

If you’re not feeling the whole DIY car detailing process, that’s okay too, we can always help you out at our reconditioning department. All you have to do is book an appointment online or by calling 325-550-2122 — stopping by works too.