Toyota CEO announces automaker’s electric battery plans

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The Toyota Motor Corp. logo in the Toyota City Showcase exhibit at the company’s Mega Web theme park in Tokyo, Japan on Monday, November 1, 2021.

Kiyoshi Ota | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Toyota, one of the world’s largest automakers, plans to invest 4 trillion yen ($ 35 billion) to build a full lineup of 30 battery-powered electric vehicles by 2030.

It also aims to increase global sales of battery-electric vehicles by 3.5 million units per year by the end of the decade, CEO Akio Toyoda said on Tuesday.

Most of Toyota’s current EV sales are hybrid electric cars powered by a combination of internal combustion engine and battery-powered electric motors. Battery-only electric vehicles represent only a fraction of its current sales.

The Japanese automaker will increase its new investment in battery technology from 500 billion yen ($ 4.4 billion) to 2,000 billion yen, according to Toyoda. It will be part of Toyota’s larger 4 trillion yen investment in battery-electric vehicles and will include both capital spending as well as research and development.

Toyota also plans to invest an additional 4 trillion yen in other types of electric vehicles, including hybrid cars, plug-in hybrids and fuel cell electric vehicles, which use hydrogen as a power source.

“In this diverse and unexplored era, it is important to flexibly change the types and quantities of products produced, while keeping an eye on market trends,” Toyoda said during a briefing on the manufacturer’s strategies. automotive industry in battery-electric vehicles, according to official translations of its remarks into Japanese.

“We believe that it is more important to adapt quickly to future changes than to try to predict the future, which is only uncertain. We want to keep options available to our customers until the good way is known “, he added.

For its luxury brand Lexus, Toyota aims to have battery-electric vehicles account for 100% of vehicle sales in Europe, North America and China by 2030 and globally by 2035.

Despite being one of the pioneers of hybrid models, Toyota has been relatively slow in its progression towards battery-only electric vehicles compared to some of its global competitors like General Motors and Ford.

At the United Nations climate conference in Scotland last month, the Japanese automaker refused to join a group of six major automakers, including Swedish Volvo and Daimler Mercedes-Benz, to sign a declaration aimed at phase out fossil-fueled cars by 2040, Reuters reported.

A senior Toyota executive reportedly told the news agency that the company did not want to be seen as an electric vehicle maker, but rather as a carbon neutral company.

Toyota is aiming for carbon neutrality in its manufacturing plants by 2035, Toyoda said in Tuesday’s briefing.

Rival Nissan announced last month that it would invest 2,000 billion yen (about $ 17.6 billion) over the next five years to accelerate the electrification of its product line. It plans to deploy 23 new electrified models by 2030, of which 15 will be fully electric.


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