Toyota announced that it is launching a new brand, KINTO, dedicated to offering mobility services to users across Europe. This is part of Toyota’s global vision to evolve into a mobility company by providing all kinds of services related to transportation to people around the world.
Toyota aims to grow its mobility services offer in addition to traditional private and fleet vehicle sales through a strategy organised around four pillars. The company will use a distinct and dedicated brand to appeal to new categories of mobility users, from individuals to corporate clients as well as cities. It will increase its share of the full service leasing (FSL) market, which consists of providing multi-brand all-in-one vehicle and services offers to corporate and individual customers.
Toyota will leverage the power of data and vehicle connectivity to develop and launch services like car sharing, carpooling, or subscription where viable. the automaker is preparing to integrate future advances in automated driving to market-test automated mobility-as-a-service transport, for example using the e-Palette concept currently under development at global level.
“KINTO is part of our strategy to grow our total European business. In markets where it can be viable and sustainable, adding mobility services to our traditional business model will allow us to respond to new customer needs and support cities and regions’ emerging mobility requirements,” said Dr Johan van Zyl, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe.
In 2018, Toyota started building the foundations necessary to prepare the European organisation to integrate new mobility services into its existing business of making and selling cars. Toyota established two entities, respectively a fleet management company (Toyota Fleet Mobility, based in Cologne, Germany) and a digital platform company (Toyota Connected Europe, based in London, UK).
Toyota Fleet Mobility focuses on growing its Full-Service Leasing in the European market. TFM is growing organically (with current affiliates present in Spain, France and Italy) and through acquisitions. It recently acquired Inchcape Fleet Solutions (IFS) to grow its business in the UK market. TFM is a joint-venture between Toyota Financial Services Corporation and Toyota Motor Europe.
Toyota Connected Europe is the European subsidiary of Toyota’s technological enabler and data company. It develops and implements a range of products and services associated with connected vehicle systems, such as Toyota Big Data Centre, as well as services within Toyota’s proprietary Mobility Services Platform (MSPF). The KINTO brand will be used to clearly position the offer as dedicated to new ways to consume mobility, and will stand for “inclusive and trustworthy,” “simple and effortless,” and “sustainable.”
“Our new mobility brand KINTO signals that the company is more than ever determined to meet the evolving mobility needs of the customer. Toyota and Lexus are well-established automotive brands, built around reliable quality cars. With KINTO, our ambition is to create an equally strong brand for mobility services – a brand that consistently delivers exceptional customer experiences, whether moving close to home or travelling in other markets. KINTO epitomises Toyota’s ambition to deliver Ever Better Mobility for All,” said Matthew Harrison, Executive Vice President Toyota Motor Europe.
The new brand’s name is derived from the Japanese word Kintoun or Flying nimbus, a cloud which provides on-demand transportation for a famous animated character in Japan. Just like Kintoun, KINTO wants to be available every time a customer looks for easy and clever ways to move around, whenever, wherever.
KINTO-branded services will be deployed market by market based on viability and sustainability of the business case. The initial services to be introduced in some European markets include KINTO One, KINTO Share, KINTO Join and KINTO Flex.
KINTO One is a full service lease offer, providing ease of ownership combining vehicle, service, insurance in one monthly payment. KINTO Share is a car sharing service based on a large hybrid vehicle line-up available via a self-service concept, without the running costs. Toyota’s existing car sharing service Yuko which is already operational in several cities in Europe (Dublin; Venice; Copenhagen; and Madrid), will be re-branded under KINTO.
KINTO Join is a carpooling, connecting employees who wish to share their daily commute to work, benefitting both employees and companies who can reduce their CO2 footprint while KINTO Flex is a subscription based car leasing, offering increased flexibility and providing premium experience.
Other services are being evaluated, such as ride-hailing or a multi-modal app. The services would feature easy access via mobile apps and integrated payments.