1. Discover Toyota
  2. Toyota in Europe
  3. Our journey in Europe
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Our history in Europe

From a small-scale car importer to nine manufacturing sites 
Our European story began on a very small scale nearly 60 years ago, with the first shipments of our cars to a motoring public who knew little about Toyota.  
  • Six decades of customer focus

    Throughout our six decades in Europe we have kept pace with customers’ evolving tastes and requirements. We have increased our research and design resources here to be sure we produce the kind of cars Europeans want to drive. And we have constantly strived to do things better: offering ever better cars, better reliability and better service. 

    Since those early days we have enjoyed years of progress and steady growth, to the point where we have nine manufacturing centres across the continent. Today, nearly three out of every four vehicles we sell in Europe were built here, too. 

  • Toyota in Europe through the decades 

    Our history is the basis of our continued growth and our European story continues to develop and become more exciting. Thanks to our customers around the world, our suppliers, our dealers, our partner companies, and the efforts of our employees, we are where we are today. On our way to becoming a mobility company we continue our investments in new technologies, innovations and our people, to continue the path we have been on for so long. We continue our efforts to contribute to the economic and social prosperity of countries around the world through good and affordable Mobility for All.

    The history of our company began in 1937 with the founding of the Toyota Motor Co. Ltd. But did you know the original Toyoda business was in textile weaving in the late 19th century?

  • The 1960s

    The 1960s was a decade of transformation for Toyota. Our first entry into the European market paved the way for the major sales and manufacturing businesses we operate across the continent today.

  • The 1970s

    Toyota’s momentum was building. More and more people were aware of the Toyota name and responding to the alternative we offered to products and brands they had been familiar with for generations.  

  • The 1980s

    The 1980s brought further consolidation of our European activities and the development of exciting new ventures that helped us establish a stronger presence in Europe. 

  • The 1990s

    As we passed the milestone of 30 years in Europe, we committed major investments to establishing our own manufacturing facilities here. Through the 1990s we continued to focus on our business principles of building vehicles local to the markets where they will be sold.

  • The 2000s

    The new century was the start of a technical revolution in the automotive world. In 2000, three years on from its debut in Japan, the original Prius arrived in Europe as a sedan powered by a new powertrain that comprised both a conventional petrol engine and an electric motor.

  • The 2010s

    Sustainability and environmental concerns are at the heart of everything we do. So it’s no surprise that in the 2010s we continued to improve and adapt our electrified technology to move closer to our goal of creating the ultimate eco-car. Say hello to the Mirai.

  • The 2020s and Beyond

    We aim to make mobility available to all, built on our belief that everyone should have the freedom to move without restrictions. We will continue to tailor mobility to customer needs and help people enjoy cleaner, safer, less stressful and more connected lives.