Toyota is one of the world's largest automobile manufacturers with vehicles manufactured in 63 plants in 27 countries, and marketed in over 170 countries. Toyota began selling cars in Europe in 1963, has invested over 7 billion since 1990. In Europe alone Toyota Motor Europe has nine manufacturing plants in seven countries including two in the United Kingdom, R&D and logistics centres, and employs around 93,400 people, directly and indirectly.
Reducing environmental impact, and striving for zero emissions at every stage of the vehicles' life cycle - from research and development through to design, use and disposal is a key management priority for Toyota. Toyota is the automotive industry's leader for hybrid technology, introducing Prius - the first mass produced hybrid model - in 1997 and has since expanded its hybrid offering including Lexus.
Toyota's strategy of developing and marketing cleaner and greener vehicles involves the simultaneous exploration of a wide variety of technological solutions. The evidence suggests that no single vehicle technology will match all requirements of sustainable mobility over time. Toyota believes that in the future, several types of eco-car will co-exist, and is therefore investing in a number of technologies to address key concerns of CO2 reduction, air quality and energy diversity. This has led to developments and leadership in hybrid technology, plug-in electric hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) and electric vehicles (EVs), cleaner petrol and diesels, fuel cells and alternative fuels.