Toyota: In Defense of Boring
Toyota's cars are boring, which is not the same as terrible.
Toyota, purveyors of the beigemobile. Purveyors of mobiles so beige that some writers have even come to the defense of enthusiasts who own Toyotas. The CEO of Toyota even takes offense to the word boring now. Having dealt with such dull and uninspiring machinery, I feel inclined to ask a fundamental question that has been posed many times: Is it wrong to be boring? There is a long list of car brands that I would rather own than Toyota, but fact is when it comes to being safe, reliable, and affordable transportation, there are no complaints.
A Google search yields the following definition for a car: “a road vehicle, typically with four wheels, powered by an internal combustion engine and able to carry a small number of people.” Toyota epitomizes this by bringing one of the most textbook car experiences money can buy. Take the RAV4. It has four wheels, it rolls about unceremoniously, and it carries five people. The RAV4 is not terribly stylish, nor does it have any groundbreaking features or exciting driving dynamics. But it does what it’s made to do without any issues.
That is a great thing.
For all of the talk about Toyotas not being about the drive, or lacking enthusiast qualities, a Toyota also does not disappoint. It may be underwhelming, or uninspiring, but it gets the job done right every time. And that job is to safely and efficiently move its occupants from one place to another. At the forefront of automotive technology, there are cars with incredible power, opulent features, dramatic styling, and any of a menagerie of fancy gimmicks or memorable tricks. In front of these extras should be a car that is a car first. Toyota understands that very well, and delivers it with no hesitation. And now that Toyota demonstrates routine mastery of the basic car, they can concentrate on fun cars.