Category Archives: Bill Walsh News

Toyota Self-Driving Cars: Safer, Smarter, and User Friendly

The Toyota Research Institute is making headlines as it makes advances in autonomous vehicle technologies. The 2.0 advanced safety research vehicle was recently displayed in Sonoma California and have been dubbed the Chauffeur and Guardian technologies.

According to Toyota, the new Toyota self-driving cars operate by using a range of machines and systems. These include the LIDAR feature, a combination of radar and cameras that work to optimize the computer’s perception of environment. The autonomous Prius models also rely on high-definition maps to a degree, that, when combined with LIDAR, paint a clear picture for the computer.

“Basically, it is a smart vehicle designed to get smarter over time,” said Gill Pratt, CEO of the Toyota Research Institute. “It will learn individual driver habits and abilities and will benefit from shared intelligence from other cars as data gathering, sharing and connectivity technologies advance.  We believe Guardian can probably be deployed sooner and more widely than Chauffeur, providing high-level driver-assist features capable of helping mitigate collisions and save lives, sooner rather than later.”

The Chauffeur system is a fully autonomous technology that can operate constantly, while Guardian is a high-level driver assist system. This means the car is able to always monitor what’s happening, helping to prevent crashes moments before humans are even aware of danger. You don’t have to give up your freedom behind the wheel with these self-driving systems—they just work when you need them. At Bill Walsh Toyota, we can’t wait to see what else the brand has in store for the future.

Preparing Your Car for Spring

With the winter season gone and with it the harsh weather, it’s time to prepare your car for the warm months ahead. Spring is finally here and getting your car ready can be done in a single afternoon. Here are a few things you need to do when preparing your car for spring from us here at Bill Walsh Toyota.

  • Wipers – Ice can do a number on your wiper blades, which is why you should replace them at least once a year. Spring is a great time to do so as you have a full three seasons before winter strikes again. In addition to that, pristine wiper blades will ensure you can drive in heavy spring rains without sacrificing visibility.
  • Tires – Keeping your tires inflated at the manufacturer-suggested pressure isn’t tough to do. The cold winter weather likely reduced your tire pressure and if you added air to compensate, you need to make sure your tires aren’t over-inflated. Warmer weather will cause tire pressure to increase.
  • Suspension – Have a mechanic take a look at your suspension and alignment. Winter is hard on roads, often resulting in potholes and rocks that can do a number on your car. Make sure all of your components are up to par to ensure your safety during the warmer months. The last thing you want to do is wait on your car while it’s in for repairs on a nice spring day!

Fully Restored 1978 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser Showroom Centerpiece

Of all the great vehicles in our showroom, one vehicle stands out in particular for its extraordinary craftsmanship and beautiful yet rugged design. This is the 1978 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser belonging to our owner Bill Walsh.

 

This Land Cruiser has been fully restored. Its color design, Freeborn Red for the body and Cygnus White for the hardtop, is all original. Under the hood, there’s a powertrain outputting 135 horsepower, controlled by a 4-speed manual transmission.

 

The Willys M38 Jeep proved a very important vehicle to the war effort during World War II. Its tough and attractively austere design inspired Toyota to design and engineer the Land Cruiser, which emerged in the early 1950s.

 

Though the Land Rover was the established rival of the Toyota Land Cruiser, the latter outdid the former time and time again. The Land Cruiser featured a shorter wheelbase, making it more stable than its rival, and also required less maintenance.

 

A more family-friendly Land Cruiser SUV eventually replaced the Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser in the United States in the early 1980s as Toyota stopped importing the original version.

 

The prestige of the original Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser has only grown and grown since that time. Stop in at Bill Walsh Toyota to see this historic model firsthand. Up close, there is no mystery as to why it has gained the reputation it has. This is a beautiful and dignified automobile.