Toyota’s Tokyo Auto Amusement Park: A Driver’s Dream
A lot of amusement parks have at least one automobile themed ride. Whether it’s bumper cars, go karts or even a Cars themed roller coaster or perhaps that upcoming FAST & FURIOUS ride there’s just something about them. Toyota gets it, and they’ve taken the appeal to the next level: a whole amusement park about their cars!
They call it “Mega Web.” Sadly we can’t exactly give you readers road trip advice for that destination given it’s located in the Odaiba section of Tokyo. If you can make the trip, this is THE amusement park by gear heads and for gear heads. If you prefer a more educational trip, Mega Web lays out the whole history of Toyota through fun and interactive display tours. If what you crave is time behind the wheel, Toyota has that. If all you want to do is glance at some sweet cars, Mega Web has one of the largest displays of Toyota automobiles in the world.
Mega Web is no mere showroom. The Japanese company has spared no expense creating a complex that not only displays almost every vehicle they sell, but allows anyone and everyone to take every car in their fleet for a spin through the 1.3-km “Ride One” course. Of course the requirement is that you have a Japanese or international drivers license or permit. If you do, you may find yourself hopping behind the wheel of a new Land Cruiser or GT 86 and pushing them to their limits.
The loss of the Scion brand as well as the lower emphasis on sports cars does not mean Toyota forgot about the younger set. Mega Web has “The Ride Studio” which comprises of two separate indoor tracks and vehicles that allow kids to drive Toyotas just like the grownups. They are downsized versions of said cars.
What we found remarkable from the 360 VR tour is that the Toyota Showcase is very much an interactive experience. You can drive virtual Grand Prix type video games, as well as virtual driving simulators. All of these are free to try; it’s not an arcade! The key is being patient enough to wait your turn.
Another neat thing we saw on the Mega Web website was the use of Toyota’s answer to the Segway personal mover, the Winglet. In Mega Web you can hop on and test yourself on the Winglet in a complex obstacle course. It’s a narrow track winds its way through the complex is set to include tests for the i-Road, i-Tril, and self-driving cars.
Finally, there’s the “History Garage.” The name is apt give how it is a full showcase of Toyota’s rich past. You will see such things as current and past racing vehicles of all types, as well as classic vehicles of all makes and manufacturers outside of Toyota including a 1963 Corvette, 1983 Delorean, and Jaguar e-type. Toyota has special events where they take those old school cars out for people to drive on the track. If you’re lucky, that could be you!
Toyota’s Mega Web is an ambitious palace. And we are genuinely curious how it pans out. Will we see other car manufacturers presenting their products in a similar way? Maybe. Until then, be sure to visit the Mega Web website for more details, and make sure your browser translation is turned on as the main site is in Japanese.