TGS shares Toyota’s steps for a cleaner and safer fleet for Humanitarian Customers at 2022 Fleet Forum Conference.
Fleet Forum conference host, Toyota Gibraltar Stockholdings (TGS) shared Toyota’s vision for road safety and the environment and the steps they are taking towards supporting humanitarian organisations.
Fred Burgod, Co-CEO of TGS, highlighted that Toyota, like all other manufacturers, are facing tough challenges in the production and supply chain due to Covid-19, the war in Ukraine and natural disasters. Global shortages of electrical steel and semiconductors will persist through 2022, pushing automakers to reduce output at a time when the demand for vehicles is very strong. In addition, the global freight market is extremely volatile, not only leading to higher costs, but also impacting the predictability of shipping time.
Toyota’s commitment to humanitarian organisations
In the face of these challenges, TGS described Toyota's strategy for achieving global carbon neutrality during their presentation. They have been making investments to lessen their own environmental impact of every process, from production through recycling and disposal. Between 2018 and 2022, TGS reduced their own carbon footprint, contributing to the effort.
Toyota's strategy includes developing sustainable and useful solutions for different regions in addition to greening its own activities. Toyota is aware of the operational difficulties faced by its customers in the humanitarian sector, including adverse environmental conditions, poor fuel quality, poor road and infrastructure conditions, logistics, and maintenance.
Piers Watson, TGS’ UN Sales Manager outlined the key steps Toyota will be taking to meet the needs of the aid and development sector.
TGS announced the first hybrid electric vehicle in their stock line-up
In order to pursue its carbon neutral goal and further along local sustainability goals Toyota plans the introduction of Hybrid Electric Vehicles. Further configurations of EVs such as Plug in Hybrid Electric Vehicles, Battery Electric Vehicles, and Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles will be under consideration for introduction based on the local situation and customer needs.
It is worth noting that production of some of the vehicles made for the African market is taking place in Africa itself. Production of the HEV Toyota Corolla Cross began in South Africa in October 2021. Since last year, the logistical issues are impacting the speed of deployment of new models and the production of current models. Toyota is readjusting its plan and the pace of implementation depends on regional factors, however TGS was pleased to announce they have introduced the first hybrid electric vehicle in their stock line-up, the RAV4. A number of RAV4 models are already in stock and will be available for purchase for select countries.
For Africa, detailed preparation is underway with Toyota distributors to be able to provide high quality maintenance support. Considerations for the disposal of the battery are also being prepared.
TGS’s technical training department is strengthened
TGS’ training department has existed for 20 years. Between 2021 – 2022, TGS has strengthened their training offering for humanitarian customers through two key announcements:
The launch of a new road safety program, originally developed by the UN System Staff College (UNSSC). Through the partnership with UNSCC, TGS is able to offer two road safety courses for drivers to NGOs and UN agencies alike. The course have recently been endorsed by RoSPA
The development of an e-learning hub, which will go live in September, to reduce fleet operators in all categories
In addition, TGS understands that organisations are increasingly looking to optimise their fleet through the reduction of emissions, costs and crashes. Currently, country fleet managers have the labour-intensive task of capturing and analysis their own data. To help organisations streamline this process, TGS is further developing a data analysis service, starting with road crash analysis.
Toyota Africa Connected
Last year, TGS presented its plans to develop a fleet management solution to enable the goal of cleaner fleets together with TerraMar Networks and TTC. The Toyota Africa Connected project will consist of tracking solutions offering fleet management services to customers, services will include best route planning, fuel theft detection, safety driving support, amongst others. For humanitarian organisations this would mean less manpower dedicated to cost-saving measures and is meant to complement their fleet management systems. TGS is currently undergoing tests on key data collection instruments to ensure accuracy. In the long-run, TGS is looking beyond fleet management and developing its view on mobility management.
With this presentation, TGS reflects on its accomplishments throughout the course of its 25-year existence while laying the groundwork for the future. TGS will continue to commit their services and technical support to the aid and humanitarian community assisting those who require more than just cars.
The humanitarian sector reacts
Many participants were enthusiastic to hear the new announcements, particularly around the hybrid electric RAV4, the road safety training for drivers and data analysis services. Organisations are keen to see progress, particularly in the area of electrification, and to get insight into the TCO of HEVs and BEVs.
Covered here are the key points of TGS’ presentation. For full coverage, we invite you to the Fleet Forum Knowledge Platform where we will post the recording in the course of the week.