According to the company’s new CEO, Toyota Motor Corp. will increase its battery-electric offerings by concentrating on its luxury Lexus brand, but it will stick to its long-standing strategy of investigating other technologies.
Koji Sato, who will take over as the leader of the largest automaker in the world on April 1, made the remarks as Toyota fought back against claims that it had been too slow to adopt battery-powered electric vehicles.
According to Toyota, which made the Prius’ hybrid technology popular, many drivers prefer hybrid vehicles, particularly in areas where the infrastructure is not yet ready to support batteries. Additionally, it has promoted hydrogen-powered automobiles as the future.
Toyota will speed up its battery-electric product offerings, according to Sato, by concentrating on the Lexus.
But he was quick to point out that this was not a significant shift in tactics and that Toyota would keep concentrating on a variety of technologies in its pursuit of carbon-neutral vehicles.
“This is not a fast pivot towards battery EVs,” he said, adding that much of the problem stemmed from one of “communication” about Toyota’s strategy.
“To the point that we have been slow at battery EV projects, I think around half of it is a communication issue,” he said.
He declared that the business would continue to pursue its previous objective of selling 3.5 million battery-electric vehicles by 2030.
When his team started playing their roles in April, he said there would be more communication about the strategy.
Sato, an engineer by training, began working for Toyota in 1992 and worked his way up the corporate ladder until he was appointed chief engineer of Lexus International in 2016.
While he oversaw the development of Lexus’s first entirely electric model, he has in the past mentioned keeping other options for vehicle propulsion open.
(Adapted from JapanTimes.co.jp)
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