The car's owners have traded in another Toyota, a Corolla Verso model.
Toyota opened its first European manufacturing facilities back in 1992 when it inaugurated the assembly plant in Burnaston, Derby and the engine factory at Deeside in North Wales. Almost a quarter of a century later, the vehicle number 4,000,000 has been driven off the production line. Earlier this year in May, Toyota celebrated 10 million cars built in Europe, with U.K. accounting for almost 40 percent of the total production on the old continent.
The car in question is a sensible Auris Hybrid ordered by Frederick and Dorothy Burden via the Pinkstones Toyota dealership located in Stoke-on-Trent. The owners are actually long-time Toyota drivers and loyal to the brand, deciding to trade in their Corolla Verso for the shiny new and thrifty compact hatchback.
They actually went all out and ordered the range-topping Excel version kicking off at £25,140 in the hybrid guise, which is the most expensive of them all. It’s powered by a naturally-aspirated 1.8-liter gasoline engine working together with an electric motor for a total output of 134 horsepower (100 kilowatts). As you would imagine, it’s definitely not the car to take down Nürburgring records, with the 0-62 mph (0-100 kph) completed in an agonizing 11.4 seconds en route to a top speed of 112 mph (180 kph).
Where the Auris Hybrid really shines is in fuel consumption by managing to return 74.3 mpg UK in the combined cycle when fitted with the smaller 15-inch alloy wheels. Upgrade to the 17-inch set and the fuel economy will drop significantly to 70.6 mpg UK.
The second-generation Auris (codenamed E180) has been around since August 2012, with a very subtle facelift introduced in February 2015. Spy images have shown Toyota has already commenced testing of an all-new model likely due to arrive in the second half of next year and ride on the TGNA platform borrowed from the latest Prius. A lower weight corroborated with an upgraded hybrid system should make the new Auris more frugal than the current model.
Gallery: Toyota Auris facelift arrives in Geneva with new engines, including 1.2 turbo
TOYOTA DELIVERS ITS FOUR MILLIONTH BRITISH-BUILT VEHICLE
The four millionth vehicle built by Toyota in the UK has been driven off the production line, an Auris Hybrid that is now the proud possession of Frederick and Dorothy Burden, customers of Pinkstones Toyota in Stoke on Trent.
As long term Toyota drivers, they traded in their beloved Corolla Verso. The couple were surprised to learn of the significance of their new car, commenting “After a last minute change of heart we decided to upgrade to the Excel specification. This decision meant we’ve ended up with the four millionth vehicle”. This is the first Hybrid model they have owned, but the quiet engine and handling has certainly impressed, “you’re never too old to try something new.”
Toyota’s manufacturing plant in Burnaston, Derby, and its sister engine factory at Deeside in North Wales, were Toyota’s first European production centres, opening in 1992. Burnaston has the distinction of being a Toyota global eco-plant, a pioneer of environmental best practice, eliminating waste, reducing use of natural resources, and promoting sustainable energy and biodiversity. The factory was the UK’s first car manufacturing plant to achieve ISO14001 certification for environmental management.
The quality of the work at TMUK was recognized in its selection as the first European site for hybrid vehicle production, with the introduction of Auris Hybrid in 2009. Today the factory is the exclusive production centre for Auris and Avensis models for the European market. In May 2016, Toyota celebrated 10 million vehicles produced across European operations, with UK-manufactured cars accounting for almost 40 per cent of that figure.