What do Toyota model names mean?
After being involved with the car business for a while, you’ll start to notice that car models have some pretty strange names. It might make you curious about where these titles came from. Were they just made up words? Is there meaning behind them? Here at Toyota on the Trail, we’re going to finally answer the question, What do Toyota model names mean? You’ll find that some vehicles have a much deeper meaning and some are just acronyms for longer titles. Let’s dive in and find the history behind your favorite Toyota vehicle.
4Runner is a combination between 4-wheel drive and off-road runner.
Avalon is a name that might have you thinking about King Arthur but it is actually a word that portrays the image of comfort spaciousness and sophistication.
Camry is simply the Japanese word for “crown”.
Celica actually comes from the Spanish word for “heavenly” or “celestial”.
Corolla is the name for the outer envelope of crowning portion of a flower.
Echo is probably the simplest definition because it is the reflection of wide-open spaces and a youthful voice.
FJ Cruiser is a name that comes from the FJ 40-series Land Cruiser that was introduced in 1961.
Highlander is a representation of the energy, ruggedness and power of an inhabitant of the Scottish Highlands.
Land Cruiser is a name that implies that the driver can go anywhere (on land).
MR2 stands for Mid-engine Rear-wheel drive, 2 seater.
Matrix, while contrary to the popular belief, this name does not come from the popular film with the same title. It actually references a rectangular arrangement of rows and columns- fitting the cross-functional nature and versatility and the interior functionality of this vehicle.
Prius derives from the Latin prefix that means “to go before”.
RAV4 is another acronym that stands for Recreational Active Vehicle with 4WD
Rav4 EV is the same concept just with Electric vehicle added on the end.
Sequoia is just as you would expect, it comes from the great Sequoia tree and represents strength, longevity and beauty.
Sienna comes from the Italian city of the same name.
Solara represents the radiance of the sun.
Supra is another Latin name that comes from the word for “to surpass” or “go beyond”.
Tacoma originated from the Salish Indian word for the mountain that provided water to their tribe. It is a name that suggests power and strength.
Tundra is another term that conveys strength and ruggedness
Venza is a combination of the two words, “venture” and “Monza”, a city in Italy.
Yaris is the most interesting name and it comes from Greek mythology from a goddess named Charis. She was a sign of beauty and elegance.
It is always interesting to look at how things got their names. It shows a history of the Toyota brand and its vehicles that that you wouldn’t otherwise have seen. So which name is your favorite? Were any of them close to what you predicted? If you could name your own Toyota vehicle, what would you name it? Visit Toyota on the Trail to see if these models live up to their names.