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Toyota will spend $100m over four years in new Technical Research Institute in Michigan
April 1, 2008 - Ann Arbor, Michigan - Toyota Technical Center (TTC) a division of Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc., today announced the establishment of the Toyota Research Institute of North America (TRI-NA). Toyota plans to spend $100 million during the next four years on advanced research activity in North America and will utilize existing facility space at the Toyota Technical Center Ann Arbor campus.
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TRI-NA initially will employ 35 researchers and administration staff, and plans to add 10 researchers in 2008 and an additional 20 by 2010. "Creating the Toyota Research Institute is the next step to strengthen Toyota's advanced research function throughout North America and to discover cutting-edge technologies for sustainable mobility," said Dr. Kikuchi.
 

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"Creating the Toyota Research Institute is the next step to strengthen Toyota's advanced research function throughout North America and to discover cutting-edge technologies for sustainable mobility," said Dr. Kikuchi.

Dr. Kikuchi states "discover," but really he means steal. Due to Japanese lack of creativity, Toyota has set up research centers in Ann Arbor, MI; Cambridge, MA; etc. to "discover" cutting-edge technologies. It probably would not be worth General Motors' time and money, even if the Japanese government allowed it, to set up a similar research center near Tokyo University because Japanese universities are not known for creating cutting edge automotive technological breakthroughs.
 

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Dr. Kikuchi states "discover," but really he means steal. Due to Japanese lack of creativity, Toyota has set up research centers in Ann Arbor, MI; Cambridge, MA; etc. to "discover" cutting-edge technologies.


Again showing they are a Photo-Copy Country
 

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Hmmm and basically in Detroit. They have wrapped themselves in the American flag, and now they try to pretend that they are a Detroit carmaker as well.
 

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ericmvest said:
Dr. Kikuchi states "discover," but really he means steal. Due to Japanese lack of creativity, Toyota has set up research centers in Ann Arbor, MI; Cambridge, MA; etc. to "discover" cutting-edge technologies. It probably would not be worth General Motors' time and money, even if the Japanese government allowed it, to set up a similar research center near Tokyo University because Japanese universities are not known for creating cutting edge automotive technological breakthroughs.
True, the Japanese have traditionally emphasized perfecting existing technology rather than ground-up innovation, but it's rather shortsighted to suggest that GM has nothing to learn from them and that "cutting-edge" technology always takes precedence over careful perfection of proven technology.

What "cutting-edge" tech has Toyota, or anyone else for that matter, "stolen" from GM anyway? Did GM "steal" the Matrix when they rebadged it as the Vibe?

Besides, GM should be flattered that Toyota would make an effort to "steal" technology, whatever that means.

Better off them spending the money in the US than elsewhere!
At least someone is thinking objectively.
 

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True, the Japanese have traditionally emphasized perfecting existing technology rather than ground-up innovation, but it's rather shortsighted to suggest that GM has nothing to learn from them and that "cutting-edge" technology always takes precedence over careful perfection of proven technology.

What "cutting-edge" tech has Toyota, or anyone else for that matter, "stolen" from GM anyway? Did GM "steal" the Matrix when they rebadged it as the Vibe?

Besides, GM should be flattered that Toyota would make an effort to "steal" technology, whatever that means.

At least someone is thinking objectively.
Being a Japanese apologist is not thinking objectively. A foreign company or government setting up "research" (intelligence gathering) offices in America to gather our technology is not virtuous.


The Japanese stole General Motors catalytic converter technology. A Federal bureaucrat showed the Japanese a General Motors prototype catalytic converter that General Motors loaned the Federal Government allowing the Japanese to take notes, drawings, photographs, etc. The Japanese subsequently produced a copy. A Federal judge did not give General Motors damages because General Motors patented a later version of their catalytic converter and not the prototype the Japanese copied.

Toyota copied TRW’s concept for hybrid vehicles when they developed the Prius. They allowed TRW’s patents to expire before they introduced the Prius therefore there was no patent infringement.

Other than the Toyota Production System, what manufacturing or product innovation has Toyota contributed to the automotive industry?
 

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Being a Japanese apologist is not thinking objectively. A foreign company or government setting up "research" (intelligence gathering) offices in America to gather our technology is not virtuous.
Intelligence gathering? This is not a war its business, and there is not much I can think of that Toyota would want to steal from GM.

The Japanese stole General Motors catalytic converter technology. A Federal bureaucrat showed the Japanese a General Motors prototype catalytic converter that General Motors loaned the Federal Government allowing the Japanese to take notes, drawings, photographs, etc. The Japanese subsequently produced a copy. A Federal judge did not give General Motors damages because General Motors patented a later version of their catalytic converter and not the prototype the Japanese copied.
I would need to see something about this, but if GM only patented a later version of it then really it is there fault for being sloppy. But don't you know that all car companies these days strip down their competitors cars? My cousin had in internship at Ford and they would strip all sorts of cars down to see exactly how the competition is building their cars.

Toyota copied TRW’s concept for hybrid vehicles when they developed the Prius. They allowed TRW’s patents to expire before they introduced the Prius therefore there was no patent infringement.
Why would a company release a product with a risk of patent infringement? That does not make a good business case and obviously you don't understand how business works. It's not pretty, it's cut throat.
 

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Being a Japanese apologist is not thinking objectively. A foreign company or government setting up "research" (intelligence gathering) offices in America to gather our technology is not virtuous.
Japanese secret agents posing as automotive engineers?

ericmvest said:
The Japanese stole General Motors catalytic converter technology. A Federal bureaucrat showed the Japanese a General Motors prototype catalytic converter that General Motors loaned the Federal Government allowing the Japanese to take notes, drawings, photographs, etc. The Japanese subsequently produced a copy. A Federal judge did not give General Motors damages because General Motors patented a later version of their catalytic converter and not the prototype the Japanese copied.

Toyota copied TRW’s concept for hybrid vehicles when they developed the Prius. They allowed TRW’s patents to expire before they introduced the Prius therefore there was no patent infringement.

Other than the Toyota Production System, what manufacturing or product innovation has Toyota contributed to the automotive industry?
If GM has any sense, you can bet they've ripped apart Camrys, Accords and Altimas before. They don't think everything up themselves either.
 

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That does not make a good business case and obviously you don't understand how business works. It's not pretty, it's cut throat.
I guess I know enough about business to know that corporate espionage goes on that is not only unethical, but illegal. Don’t you remember when Volkswagen settled with General Motors for the damages caused by Lopez taking confidential General Motors' documents with him when he left General Motors to go to Volkswagen?

Foreign companies open research operations in the U.S. and hire the competitions' engineers and scientists at inflated salaries to find out what the competition is doing. Hopefully Toyota’s motivations are honorable, but many foreign companies’ motivations in setting up research operations in the United States have not been. It is naive to think other wise.
 

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Japanese secret agents posing as automotive engineers?

If GM has any sense, you can bet they've ripped apart Camrys, Accords and Altimas before. They don't think everything up themselves either.
See my above post about corporate espionage. Also, I did not say anything was illegal about product tear downs of products that are on the market.
 

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I guess I know enough about business to know that corporate espionage goes on that is not only unethical, but illegal. Don’t you remember when Volkswagen settled with General Motors for the damages caused by Lopez taking confidential General Motors' documents with him when he left General Motors to go to Volkswagen?

Foreign companies open research operations in the U.S. and hire the competitions' engineers and scientists at inflated salaries to find out what the competition is doing. Hopefully Toyota’s motivations are honorable, but many foreign companies’ motivations in setting up research operations in the United States have not been. It is naive to think other wise.
Anything is possible, but I don't think we should be paranoid. Toyota has given us no reason to think they're trying to do anything illegal here. Even if they were, I'd imagine they would do so in a slyer fashion.
 

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This totally makes it all better.
It makes all the difference in the world.
I'm now a big Toyota fan.
So what if it's espionage?
Over the next twenty years, those 10 researchers will spend a fortune at 7-11,
the pioneering, quintessential North American-owned and operated convenience store.
 

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If all Toyota did was copy and steal GM's technology how come the companies have almost no similarities? When it comes to transmissions engines, safety features, hybrid tech, Toyota has completely different stuff.

By the way the Toyota production system is a great thing. The fact that you can built your product better than anyone else is a great competitive advantage.

By the way all automakers take apart each other cars to see what the other is doing. GM even explained how they cut up a Jetta to see how VW got to ride so good.
 
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