LOS ANGELES -- Toyota Financial Services has joined RouteOne, the online joint venture of General Motors, Ford Motor and DaimlerChrysler designed to ease the loan-application process for dealers and consumers.
Toyota Financial Services, the U.S. captive finance arm that works with Toyota and Lexus dealers, has taken a 10 percent equity stake in RouteOne. Each of the Big 3 automakers holds a 30 percent share. Toyota did not disclose its investment.
The Big 3 announced the Web-based credit initiative in January. The venture, since named RouteOne, hopes to allow multiple finance sources -- including banks and credit unions -- to be listed on dealer finance and insurance systems. Multiline dealers can also use the common system across all their brands. The system should be online in 2003.
Mike Groff, vice president of planning and development for Toyota Financial Services, will lead the Toyota team on RouteOne. Toyota Financial President George Borst will serve on RouteOne's board of directors. Toyota Financial currently manages about $36 billion in assets.