Wed | Dec 11, 2019

Toyota Jamaica brings 4x4 excursion to Trelawny

Published:Sunday | November 17, 2019 | 12:24 AMMickella Anderson - Gleaner Writer
It was a Toyota 4x4 affair!
Talk about getting creative and being fully prepared on the TJAM 4x4 club excursion.
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12

If we had to find just one word to describe last Sunday’s excursion to the picturesque Harmonization Beach in Trelawny, courtesy of Toyota Jamaica and its 4x4 Club, it would simply be a ‘vibe’.

From as early as 9 a.m., club members rolled out in different 4x4 Toyota vehicles en route to a seemingly secret spot on Jamaica’s idyllic north coast.

With picnic baskets adequately stocked and a string of family members comfortably in tow, the group made its way along a journey that ended in rugged terrain to get to the beach, rightfully named after its greatest quality.

General sales and marketing manager at Toyota Jamaica Howard Foster told Automotives that the difficulty of the trail was a strategic choice.

“We want to give our customers a chance to experience off-roading and to get to experience their vehicle for what it was meant to do,” he said. “It’s also a bit of a family affair; we mingle with our customers and show them some appreciation, spend some time and get to know them, and they get to know us.”

Also in attendance was Toyota Jamaica’s managing director, Tom Connor, and his wife Rowena, as well as a range of staff members and, of course, Toyota 4x4 owners.

According to Foster, the TJam 4x4 excursions are usually actualised every few months and have been going on for the past 10 years. They give the organisation a unique opportunity to go beyond the everyday customer relationship.

With each trip, vehicle owners take on a different location, which is, in itself, part of the mystery and excitement of the club’s shenanigans.

“This is one of the easier trails,” Foster said of the stretch of calm, white sand beach and the rocky path to get there.

“Sometimes we go up in the mountains, which is really rugged, and to select your four wheel drive. It is usually a nice location, and customers usually ask at the end of the day, ‘When is the next one?’ They look forward to it.”

‘Nice family feel’

And indeed, customers sang high praises for the trips.

Norman Elliott, who beamed proudly that he had spent a weekend on a TJam 4x4 excursion, told Automotives, “The last time, we went to a river in Portland and I loved the water.”

He said that what keeps him coming back are, “the friends around me, the grills, and drinks”, adding that he had formed friendships exclusively through Toyota Jamaica and these excursions.

Like him, Christopher Thompson is a repeat guest.

“Honestly, my first trip was pretty good,” Thompson said when the Automotives team caught up with him in waist-deep waters surrounded by friends and drinks.

He added, “As much as it’s just vehicles that bring the people together, there’s a nice feel of family. Everyone gets along well, everyone’s sharing and having laughs, and it was just something that I wanted to experience again.”

Perhaps it was fourth-timer Britta Hay who said it best.

The relaxed participant, whose desserts dazzled the taste buds of friends, said, “This is just a really chill family vibe. You get to see so much of Jamaica, and it’s a wonderful way to spend a Sunday with friends and friends – you haven’t yet met.”

Currently, the Toyota Jamaica 4x4 Club is exclusively for Toyota owners and is free to join.

“You can join the club on our website, www.toyotajamaica.com, and you will be a part of the email system, but it’s all Toyota 4x4 vehicles that we invite and that can be a part of the club,” Foster said.

“This is just a way to know our customers – what they do, who they are, what they like to do, and not just about the vehicles,” he closed.

 

Photos by Teino Evans