Toyota adding Clear Channel


Toyota says it will be working with Clear Channel Radio’s iheartradio, incorporating more than 750 radio stations and other exclusive content into select Toyota vehicles beginning in 2011.  This is the first partnership Toyota is announcing for mobile application integration.  More details will be released at the Consumer Electronics Show in January. 

Toyota will be working closely with Clear Channel’s iheartradio to integrate its mobile app into select Toyota vehicles starting next year.  With more than 10.5 million consumers using the mobile app, iheartradio will allow Toyota customers to access more than 750 of America’s favorite local radio stations, as well as unique celebrity-hosted channels from Christina Aguilera, Eagles, and Weezer, local traffic reports and commercial-free shows from Ryan Seacrest, Elvis Duran and the some of the best DJs and hosts from across the country. 

“Personalization is important to our customers.  Delivering iheartradio in the vehicle will allow our owners to customize their drive-time experience”, said Jon Bucci, vice president advanced technology, TMS.  “I have always felt Toyota provides one of the best audio platforms and this partnership takes it even further.”

“Using our digital expertise to further enhance the driving experience, and make the car the next digital audio and information platform for consumers, it is great to work with a leading automotive partner in Toyota,” said John Hogan, Clear Channel Radio CEO. “Our iheartradio service is a perfect fit for the car, offering literally hundreds of radio stations and dozens of programming genres to choose from – whether that is your hometown favorite you grew up with, a station in the city you are driving in, or a category of music or information that engages you.  You’ll be able to have your favorite entertainment, nationally or locally, with real time traffic updates.”   

RBR-TVBR observation: This is clearly an example of radio taking the mobile “bull by the horns” and keeping itself firmly entrenched in the dashboard. We all know that the coming model years for cars will have progressively more and more mobile internet capability. Joining that bandwagon with a major manufacturer such as Toyota at this stage of the game is a great idea, and just more dollars for traditional radio’s online ad sales.