20 Jan 20

Toyota expands its vision for mobility services in Europe

Toyota’s move to launch KINTO in Europe is part of the car maker’s global vision to evolve into a mobility company, which began in 2018.

Back then, Toyota started to build the foundations to integrate new mobility services into its existing business of making and selling cars.

The company established Toyota Fleet Management (TFM) in Cologne, Germany and a digital platform company Toyota Connected Europe, based in London, UK.

Mobility services

Now, Toyota is aiming to grow its mobility services offering through four distinct pillars of business, starting with a new brand that will appeal to new categories of mobility user, from individuals to corporate clients and cities.

It also wants to increase its share of the Full Service Leasing (FSL) market, through which it will provide multi-brand, all-in-one vehicle and services to corporates and individuals.

Then Toyota aims to fully harness the power of data and vehicle connectivity to develop and launch services such as car sharing, carpooling and subscription where viable.

Delivering the transport of the future

By that time, it will be ready to integrate future advances in automated driving to market-test automated mobility-as-a-service, possibly using the e-Palette concept, a range of self-driving boxes delivering people, packages and food, currently under development at a global level.

Dr Johan van Zyl, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe, said: “KINTO is part of our strategy to grow our total European business. In markets where it can be viable and sustainable, adding mobility services to our traditional business model will allow us to respond to new customer needs and support cities and regions’ emerging mobility requirements.”

The flying numbus

The KINTO brand, the name of which is derived from the Japanese word Kintoun or Flying nimbus, a cloud which provides on-demand transportation for a famous animated character, will be used to position the offer as dedicated to new ways to consume mobility, and will (according to a press release) stand for “inclusive and trustworthy,” “simple and effortless,” and “sustainable.”

Said Matthew Harrison, Executive Vice President Toyota Motor Europe: “Our new mobility brand KINTO signals that the company is more than ever determined to meet the evolving mobility needs of the customer.”

The initial services that will be introduced in some European markets include:

  • KINTO One: a Full Service Lease, providing ease of ownership combining vehicle, service and insurance in one monthly payment.
  • KINTO Share: a car sharing service based on a large hybrid vehicle line-up available via a self-service concept, without the running costs. Toyota’s existing car sharing service Yuko which is already operational in several cities in Europe (Dublin; Venice; Copenhagen; and Madrid), will be re-branded under KINTO.
  • KINTO Join: Carpooling, connecting employees who wish to share their daily commute to work, benefitting both employees and companies who can reduce their CO2 footprint.
  • KINTO Flex: Subscription based car leasing, offering increased flexibility and providing premium experience.

Other services are being evaluated, such as ride-hailing or a multi-modal app.

Authored by: Alison Pittaway