A brief history of Toyo Tires
Toyo Tires has stood for innovation, quality, performance, and excellent service for 75 years. Combined, the Toyo group of companies has development, manufacturing, testing, distribution, and marketing operations throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Oceania.
As a result, Toyo Tires has built a solid reputation around the world. And who knows tires better than the very people who sell them everyday? In Malaysia, Toyo Tires has won the Superbrands Malaysia’s Choice Award 2021 (Cars & Allied Product Category) from Superbrands, the world’s largest independent arbiter of branding. This is just one of the many accolades Toyo Tires have won over the years globally.
The vision to manufacture great tires began in August 1945, when the founding president, Mr. Rikimatsu Tomihisa, established the Toyo Tire & Rubber Co, Ltd. in Japan.
In 1966, Toyo Tires became the first Japanese tire manufacturer to establish a subsidiary in the United States. From a small office in Southern California, Toyo Tire (U.S.A.) Corporation (as it was then known) began warehousing and distributing commercial truck tires. Passenger replacement tires were added to the company's product offerings in 1975, and through a network of independent tire dealers, the Toyo Tires brand began to grow in the United States.
The first tires manufactured in the United States to bear the Toyo Tires brand occurred in the late 1980s when the company began producing commercial tires in Mt. Vernon, Illinois. In addition to supporting the U.S. economy, U.S.-based production allowed for quicker access to inventories with reduced shipping time and costs.
Today, the company's U.S. headquarters are in Cypress, California, and distribution is supported by nearly one million square feet of warehousing in Southern California with additional warehouses in Georgia, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Texas.
In the 1980s, Toyo Tires began competing in U.S. road racing. By the end of the decade, drivers using Toyo products had captured numerous championship titles, and the motorsports legacy of Toyo Tires was born.
With championships in nearly every form, from road racing to off-road racing to drifting, Toyo Tires has become a household name amongst amateur and professional racers. More than that, however, these motorsports activities have provided invaluable knowledge, exposure, and enthusiasm, which consistently pushes Toyo Tires to develop the best products imaginable and results in new technology and innovations.
To meet the demands of consumers—and set a few trends in the process—Toyo Tires has also become a leader in fitments and dynamic tire applications. From the late 1990s and into the 21st century, the company has been responsible for several significant product developments in these areas.
As the sport compact tuner market exploded, Toyo Tires responded with low profile, large rim diameter high performance tires. In quick fashion, passenger car tire sizes reached 18-inches, something practically unheard of just a few years earlier. Since the late 1990s, rim sizes have continued to grow. Toyo Tires set the pace once again in 2008, releasing the first-ever 26- and 28-inch passenger car tires. Less than a year later they followed it up with a 30-inch passenger car tire.
In another area, with trends moving toward customizing light trucks and SUVs with larger wheel and tire packages in the late 1990s, Toyo Tires introduced the Proxes S/T, the first properly load-rated sport truck tire. This specialty product resulted in tremendous sales and established the company as a leader in the sport truck tire market. Still offered today, the Proxes S/T is complemented by a new generation, the Proxes ST II.
Off-Road and Luxury
Off-road enthusiasts embraced the Open Country M/T when it was introduced in 2003. With it they found a tire that had exceptional off-road handling, durability, and tread life as well as an aggressive look and a smoother, quieter ride on the highway. The Open Country M/T has proven to be more than just a great tire for customized trucks; it is a champion in the world of off-road racing, both short course and desert.
In April 2007, the company introduced its first luxury-touring tire, the Versado LX. Developed with the same quality and performance that built the Toyo Tires reputation, the Versado LX—and the national television campaign that accompanied it—exposed the Toyo Tires brand to a whole new customer. As its tagline states, the Versado LX is "Performance refined, luxury redefined."
Our tire portfolio covers a broad range of applications—from the high-performance, racing-inspired Proxes line to the Open Country line for 4x4 and SUVs to the Environmental Proxes Ne to our broad range of commercial truck tires. No matter which car, 4x4, SUV, or commercial vehicle you drive, Toyo Tires has the right tires for you.
As it was in the beginning, the commitment of Toyo Tires to innovation, quality, performance, and excellent customer service is unwavering and ongoing.
Toyo Tyre Malaysia Sdn Bhd was established in Taiping, Malaysia on April 12, 2011 following the acquisition of Silverstone Berhad.
On May 8, 2013, Toyo Tire & Rubber Co., Ltd. Chairman, Mr Kenji Nakakura officiated the Toyo Tyre Malaysia Factory Completion Ceremony – a traditionally important event to mark a major accomplishment before commencement of operations.
The state-of-the-art tyre facility costing RM800 million sited on a 148-acre site in Kawasan Perindustrian Kamunting Raya, Kamunting, Taiping produces world-class performance and high quality tyres for passenger car, MPV and SUV / 4 x 4 tyres. It is equipped with the latest manufacturing equipment and uses Toyo Tires’ most advanced technologies – T-Mode and Advanced Tyre Operation Module (A.T.O.M) a highly flexible and automated production system that maintains consistency of product quality at all times, during the manufacturing process.
Toyo Tyre Malaysia’s flagship manufacturing facility is primed to be the largest outside Japan for Toyo Tires at full capacity. The factory will produce 2.5 million tyres that will double to 5 million tyres in 2015 and exported to Southeast Asian countries, Middle East, Europe and the US. Indeed, in 2019 Toyo Tires announced the completion of its new plant building at Kamunting in its phase 2 expansion, making the Kamunting factory the biggest tyre factory in Malaysia producing up to 7.4 million tyres. This expansion of production capacity is part of its plan to strengthen the company’s business foundation in order to maximise profits, and is intended to further solidify the’ sales of large-diameter tires for pickup trucks, SUVs, and CUVs where Toyo Tires already has a competitive advantage.
Moving From Strength To Strength
Toyo Tyre Sales and Marketing Malaysia Sdn Bhd, the marketing arm of Toyo Tires in Malaysia also grew in tandem with the growth of the manufacturing arm, establishing a strong and comprehensive network of “One-Stop Tyre Sales and Service” centres throughout Malaysia. Today, over a hundred Toyo Centres are operating throughout Malaysia, offering consumers modern facilities with state of the art equipment, ample parking bays & comfortable air conditioned waiting areas while they get their vehicles looked after.
In line with the continued expansion of the Toyo Tires brand within Malaysia, the company has gone on in 2021 to select Tengku Djan Ley, as the Toyo Tires Brand Ambassador. Tengku Djan, a well-known figure in the Malaysian motorsport and motoring scene, having been involved in it for several decades with success in both local and international events such as the Sepang 1000 KM race, the D1 Grand Prix “All-Star” World Championship, Formula Drift Asia, and the Toyota Gazoo Racing Festival, of which Toyo Tires is the Gold sponsor. Tengku Djan is an ideal fit for Toyo Tires, which prides itself on being a global brand that offers performance, durability and safety for its users, and is expected to enhance Toyo’s image to the next level and perhaps attract a new segment of users as brand ambassador.