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TOGO

Togo
Togo Logo.png
Status Defunct
Headquarters
Japan
Founded 1935
In business 1935 to 2001 (America)


Innovations

TOGO, or Togo, was a Japanese roller coaster manufacturer known for inventing the stand-up roller coaster. TOGO is also credited with creating the first working pipeline roller coaster. TOGO created several unique coasters, including its inverting hypercoaster Manhattan Express (now known as The Big Apple Coaster) in Las Vegas, Nevada, which combined large drops, rough transitions, and inversions. Their looping Wild Mouse roller coaster was a ride style with a drop into a vertical loop, followed by the hairpin turns and drops of a traditional Wild Mouse. TOGO is also renowned for inventing the Twist-and-Dive inversion. A variation of this maneuver included half of an inclined loop instead of a half-loop, so the element's end is at an angle. This variation was used on the problematic Viper at Six Flags Great Adventure. Another variation of this inversion is where riders encounter a 180-degree flip that hangs them upside down before diving down the backside of a half-loop.[1] It can currently only be found in the U.S. on The Big Apple Coaster.

Fate

Due to numerous problems with Windjammer Surf Racers at Knott's Berry Farm, the only looping Wild Mouse coaster in the U.S., Knott's Berry Farm sued TOGO for $17,000,000. While TOGO won the lawsuit, TOGO's reputation was damaged beyond repair, demands for their coasters quickly receded, and they filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2001, closing all of their American offices that year.[2]

History

TOGO's first roller coaster was at Hanayashiki Amusement Park in Japan, named Roller Coaster. It opened in 1953 and still operates to this day.

Togo's International division, based in Cincinnati, Ohio, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2001.[3]

Shockwave at Kings Dominion.

The last TOGO stand-up roller coaster, Shockwave, at Kings Dominion, closed August 9, 2015. It was the most recent and the last TOGO roller coaster to be removed from the U.S. The only operating TOGO roller coaster in the U.S. is The Big Apple Coaster.

While many of their rides made in the U.S. were known as rough, painful, or uncomfortable experiences, their roller coasters in Asia, such as the Ultratwister model are smoother and many consider them enjoyable.[4]

Present day

A division of the company (called トーゴサービス in Japanese), which was established in 1974, continues to operate.[5]

TOGO manufactures new parts for rides and is open to new coaster proposals.[6]

References