TOYOTA WRITES HISTORY WITH ‘CRAYON’ COMMUTER SYSTEM
Environmentally-Friendly, Gps-Guided Fleet to Start Operation in May
Toyota is in final preparations for a late May launch of its ‘Crayon’ * electric vehicle commuter system, a 21st century-minded, environmentally-friendly mobility system that combines its small two-seater electric ‘e-com’ commuter vehicle and the latest IT technologies.
The vicinity of the company’s head office in Toyota City, Aichi Prefecture, Japan, is to serve as the ‘canvas’ for the system, which features global positioning system (GPS) and mobile phone-enhanced location management.
The Crayon EV commuter system is an EV shared-use transportation system that, with quiet operation and no engine emissions, places a minimal burden on the environment. Its introduction is being considered in a number of locations, for business use in metropolitan areas and for tourist use in resort regions. It can also be used as a short distance mode of transportation for shopping or trips to and from the nearest train station in residential or housing development communities.
Toyota will use Crayon’s experimental operation, while widely disclosing its results, to improve the system and its hardware further. Opinions from a wide number of sources will be used to expand the range of applications in the future.
Crayon – intended for common use by many people – is intranet operated and comprises a variety of systems including the following:
- Reservation & Recharging Management System – based on office PCs and terminals located in specialised e-com depots
- IC Card system – in which members carry a special card that can be used as a car key or for inputting reservations or other information
- Location Management System – using MONET **, through which the Crayon Centre (a movement management centre) can track the location of each vehicle
- Real-time Information Provision System – based on VICS *** and MONET
- Charge Billing System – customers are billed for charges based on accumulated time of use
*Crayon: Fun name which creates an image of Toyota’s picture of mobility for the 21st century
**MONET: Mobile Network (Toyota Information and Communications Network)
*** VICS: Vehicle Information and Communication System
Outline of Experimental Operation