Toyota Motor Corp is reportedly developing an all-electric vehicle platform that will improve the competitiveness and efficiency of the automaker’s future EVs. In addition, the Japanese news publication Asahi Shimbun said that this new electric vehicle platform will reduce the production cost of the brand’s future electric vehicles. The report also said the decision was part of Toyota’s strategy to start mass-producing electric vehicles, as it expected consumer demand for pure electric vehicles to increase rapidly amid a sharp rise in gasoline prices.
Even more interesting, the news comes after Akio Toyoda stepped down as group CEO and was replaced by Lexus president Koji Sato. This could indicate a paradigm shift at Toyota, which has been at the forefront of greener powertrain technology but has been relatively slow to develop fully electric powertrains, largely because Toyoda is not interested in pure electric vehicles.
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This strategy of developing new dedicated electric vehicle platforms and increasingly focusing on pure electric vehicles will put the Japanese auto giant in direct competition with electric vehicle industry leader Tesla.
The Toyota bZ4X SUV is the brand’s first high-volume all-electric production vehicle and is based on the brand’s TNGA modular ICE platform rather than a pure electric architecture. The report says Toyota originally intended to use the same e-TNGA platform for its other future EVs, but has since changed its mind.
One reason behind this may be that the e-TNGA architecture shares several features with the TNGA architecture used for gasoline or hybrid vehicles, which leads to it being a complex-shaped platform with components that are completely unnecessary for electric vehicles of. This leads to higher production costs for Toyota’s EVs. The automaker is reportedly hoping to keep costs down by building a simple, EV-only architecture, like the one Tesla makes. The forthcoming EV platform could be as good as a skateboard, perfect for producing electric cars.
First published date: Jan 29, 2023 at 14:15pm CST