It looks like Toyota is getting in the smartphone business.
According to the car company, its latest futuristic concept car, Toyota Fun-Vii, is designed to look and feel like a “smartphone on four wheels.”
Toyota’s president, Akio Toyoda, unveiled the futuristic car resembling a giant smartphone to demonstrate how Japan’s top automaker is trying to take the lead in technology.
According to The Associated Press, “The car works like a personal computer and allows drivers to connect with dealers and others with a tap of a touch-panel door.”
The freshly revealed model, which stands for Vehicle interactive Internet, has a number of features allowing users to customize the car’s appearance and connect to the web while driving.
ABC News reports at just over 13 feet long and almost six feet wide, the model is slim, and its sleek body panels can change to display the user’s favorite photos, text messages, or other media.
Toyota's booth will be a major attraction at the biannual Tokyo exhibition for the auto industry. Toyota said the Fun Vii was an example of what might be in the works in "20XX," giving no dates.
"A car must appeal to our emotions," Toyoda said, using the Japanese term "waku waku doki doki," referring to a heart aflutter with anticipation.
On May 8, 2009, Toyota reported a record annual net loss of $4.2 billion, making it the latest automobile maker to be severely affected by the global financial crisis that started from 2007.
Besides the smartphone concept car, Toyota is also premiering a fuel-cell concept vehicle, FCV-R, and an electric vehicle FT-EV III, at the show.
Toyota's electric vehicle FT-EV III, still a concept or test model, doesn't have a price yet, but is designed for short trips such as grocery shopping and work commutes, running 65 miles on one full charge according to AP.