In a strategic change of gear, a Japanese business daily has stated, without citing any sources, Toyota will come out with pure EVs by 2020. This is 180-degree reversal of its earlier policy.
According to Nikkei, a Japanese daily, in what has been described to be a strategic decision that reverses its earlier stance, Toyota Motor Corp will produce long-range electric vehicles (EVs) by the end of this decade.
Earlier with rivals, including, Volkswagen AG, and Nissan, touting pure EVs as the most viable option for zero-emission vehicles for the future, Toyota had stated it would reserve EVs for mostly short-distance commutes, given the high price of batteries and their significant charging time.
But with a reversal of stance, Toyota is all set to add EVs with longer range in its product categories.
Without citing sources, the Nikkei business daily has reported that the world’s foremost car manufacturer will set up a team in early 2017 which will be dedicated to developing EVs that can travel 186 miles (300km) on a single charge.
Toyota is considering to capitalise on its existing vehicle platform such as that of the Corolla or the Prius hybrid for its EVs, said the Nikkei.
In 2020, it will initially launch its long-range EVs in Japan, which incidentally will be the year when the country will host the summer Olympics. In the same year it will also launch its product offerings in states like California, in which auto manufacturers are required by law to sell a certain portion of their zero-emission vehicles.
Toyota has stated that it will respond to Nikkei’s report on this matter, later in the day, today.
With Nissan’s Leaf having a short driving range and with its batteries needing longer charging times, potential car owners who frequently commute long distances, prefer other alternatives.
As a stop gap measure before pure EVs take to the market, Toyota has promoted fuel-cell-vehicles as the most sensible option since they provide the much needed driving range, like its conventional cousin, however the lack of refueling stations, could pose a hurdle for wide adoption.