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Toyota Corolla worldwide sales hit 40 million-plus

The Toyota Corolla,, which has been the world’s best selling car, reached a significant milestone recently, hitting 40 million sales.

In fact, Toyota says the Corolla, currently produced at 15 plants worldwide, accounts for one in five vehicles sold in Toyota’s 76-year history.

The 40-million-sold  feat was accomplished in July.

By the way, Toyota announced its best sales month in North America yesterday, and Corolla sales grew 6.5 percent to 26,681. For the year, sales have grown 5.3 percent to 210,296. Not bad at all considering it’s the last-generation model. As you probably know, the new Corolla is being built in North America at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi in Blue Springs, as well as a plant in Canada.

Here’s what Toyota Motor Sales said about the 40-million-milestone for Corolla:

If you bought a Toyota Corolla last month, your new car just might be the 40 millionth Corolla ever sold. It’s not about the number, but the number sums it up: Happy customers have made Corolla the best-selling automotive nameplate in history.

“American’s love affair with the Corolla began in 1968 and the passion is still burning,” said Jack Hollis, Toyota vice president of Marketing. “Always the poster-child for Toyota’s legendary quality, the Corolla is all-new for 2014 with expressive styling, a premium interior, and terrific driving dynamics. It’s built for the way we live today and the places we go. From urban chic to family road trip, at 40 million we’re just getting started!”

Toyota started annual production of the Corolla in November 1966 with approximately 240,000 vehicles produced at its new Takaoka Japan factory and exports began immediately.  Today, 11 generations later, over 1.1 million Corollas are produced each year.  Every hour 125 new Corollas drive out of factories in America (Blue Springs, Miss.), Brazil, Canada, China, India, Japan, Pakistan, South Africa, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam and Venezuela combined. With customers in more than 150 countries, the Corolla has earned its title as “The World’s Car.”

Legacy of Leading Safety Features

The Corolla was originally designed to meet the changing needs of Japanese commuters in the mid-1960s.  When the first Corolla rolled off the line, many automakers offered basic safety features as optional. The Corolla was among the first car lines to include rear back-up lights as a standard feature.

And Toyota’s history of evolving the Corolla to meet customers’ needs remains alive today. The base L Model of the new Corolla comes standard with LED headlights, Bluetooth, eight airbags and Toyota’s Star Safety System™. For those families who are looking for better fuel efficiency, Toyota recently announced upcoming production of a Corolla hybrid.  Toyota’s commitment to adding new standard features to the affordably-priced Corolla over time has helped ensure that families around the world continue to choose it more than any other nameplate.

Hollis continued, “As we celebrate this 40 millionth milestone, we are grateful to all those who have owned and loved their Corollas for the past 47 years and proud o fthe generations of Corolla Chief Engineers for their enduring vision.”

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And  from Japan, Toyota Motor Corp. said this:

In November 1966, Toyota opened a new plant in Takaoka, Aichi Prefecture, dedicated solely to Corolla production. Two years later, with an emphasis on providing region-specific vehicles, production began in Australia and Malaysia. From 1965 to 1968, Toyota more than doubled its total annual production from 480,000 to 1.1 million vehicles-a testament to the Corolla’s significant contribution to the growth of the company.

Corolla exports to North America began in 1968, and early sales success in this market helped global cumulative sales of the car reach 1 million units just four years after launch. In 1997, the Corolla became the world’s best-selling nameplate, with global cumulative sales exceeding 22.65 million units. More than a million units have been sold each year since 2002; last year, a total of 3,180 Corollas were sold every day across more than 150 countries and regions.

Marking the milestone, Corolla Chief Engineer Shinichi Yasui said: “I feel this car has been nurtured by people all over the world and I am very proud to have contributed to its foundation and grateful to all those who have owned and loved their Corollas. The key to the Corolla’s success is the faithful passing down of its original development concept from Tatsuo Hasegawa: that the Corolla must bring happiness and well-being to people around the world.”

The Corolla was originally designed to meet the changing needs of Japanese commuters in the mid-1960s. Then-Chief Engineer Tatsuo Hasegawa recognized that with Japan’s industry expanding, most consumers’ daily commuting time was increasing. The need to get around in a personal vehicle was therefore growing and this insight led Hasegawa to conceptualize the first Corolla, with his guiding principles defining the vehicle ever since: always evolving and designed to meet consumer needs in each market.

When the first Corolla rolled off the production line, many basic safety features were still optional. Later, to meet the needs of families, Toyota decided to include many of these features as standard. Toyota’s commitment to pursue higher and higher levels of quality and continue adding new standard features to the affordably priced Corolla has helped ensure that families around the world continue to choose it more than any other nameplate.

The history of the ever-evolving Corolla, filled with examples of technology and quality improvement, is emblematic of Toyota’s efforts to anticipate customer needs and provide ever-better cars.

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