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Toyota Models:

Intriguing Search Trends

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Published on 12/12/2016

Summary

  • Google search trends for popular Toyota models are examined.
  • Surprising U.S. results are compared with worldwide data.

Introduction

We enjoy various types of data at Car In Order and are fans of Toyota. We thought it would be interesting to see what search trends for popular Toyota models have been like, over the last 12 years. The answer seemed to be fairly obvious to us, with the Toyota Corolla being the best-selling vehicle of all time.

Boy, were we wrong. As you will see below an interesting story unfolds when comparing the United States to the rest of the world. Enjoy!

Toyota Model Search Data

Search query data was pulled from Google Trends, over a period of December 2004 to 2016. Five models were searched for: Camry, Corolla, Prius, Tacoma, and Tundra[1]. This was the result:

US Toyota Model Search Trends: Figure 1
Figure 1: Most searched for Toyota models by U.S. state

Wow. Look at all those yellow and purple pickup truck states. Even California and Hawaii! Poking around on the Internet, we came across this article which seems to confirm our finding[2]. We Americans sure do cherish our pickup trucks!

So what happens when we remove the Toyota trucks from the data? Corollas must zoom to the top now, right? Nope, far from it:

US Toyota Model Search Trends: Figure 2
Figure 2: Most searched for Toyota models by U.S. state, excluding pickup trucks

This was another shocking sight- red Camry states everywhere. Not only do Americans prefer pickup trucks but apparently when they buy sedans, they prefer the larger ones[3]. And check out Maine- the most searched for Toyota (excluding pickup trucks) is the Prius!

Where the heck are all the Google searching Corolla owners? Let’s have a look at the final map:

World Toyota Model Search Trends: Figure 3
Figure 3: World map of the most searched for Toyota models

There they are. In a majority of countries where data is available, “Corolla” search takes the top spot. Phew, the world has righted itself.

Conclusion

Please remember the maps shown display the most searched for Toyota model. They do not show the most purchased Toyota models. It is possible that Corolla owners in the U.S. just don’t perform as many Google searches as Tacoma or Camry owners in the U.S., but that seems like a stretch.

The world map really reinforces how different the U.S. and a few other countries are about automobiles. Intriguing results from an unexpected data source strikes again!

Our main takeaway is that America most searches for Toyota trucks, while the World loves to query about Corollas.


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Footnotes:

  1. The reason these five specific models were chosen is twofold. First, Google Trends can only accept five input queries at a time. Second, a number of Toyota model combinations were tested and these five models gave the highest Google Trend results. Another interesting aspect are the search terms “Tacoma” and “Tundra”. These can also mean the city or the geography respectively. However, Google also feels that when a user enters the search query Tacoma or Tundra they mean the Toyota model, because these are the number one results. We feel the small amount of “noise” added by those searching for the alternate meanings will not change the findings of this article.
  2. Yes, their data is not public which is why we used the word “seems”.
  3. Please read the Conclusion, as we reinforce that the maps shown do NOT display the most purchased Toyota models.