Toyota to Build, Sell EVs in China and India Starting From 2020
【Summary】With China and India planning to move towards only allowing electric vehicles to be sold in the countries, Toyota is on track to introduce EVs in both locations from 2020, as the Japanese automaker looks to claw its way back into the electrified segment.
Electrified vehicles, whether it's hybrids or fully-electric cars, are the future, as automakers look to meet various countries' strict emissions and fuel economy regulations. Some countries, like China, have instituted drastic requirements. China, which is the largest automotive market, is calling for plug-in hybrids and EVs to account for approximately 20 percent of total light-vehicle sales in the country by 2025. To put it more simply, if you're an automaker and don't have an EV to sell in China by that date, you're in big trouble.
Toyota Heads Towards Electric Vehicles
While Toyota was one of the first, if not the first, to come out with a mass-produced hybrid, the automaker has lagged behind others when it comes to electrified vehicles. The Japanese automaker has been quiet about its plans to fit into a world that will heavily rely on electrified vehicles in the future, as it has put more into hydrogen than EVs.
Earlier this September, Toyota and Honda began collaborating with Shell to install seven hydrogen refueling stations in Northern California. The automaker has even looked into ways it can expand on the Mirai's fuel-cell technology to create an emissions-friendly semi-truck. But things have been quiet on the electric front – until now.
Toyota's Plans To Go Big In China And India
According to an article by Bloomberg, Toyota has plans to introduce EVs in China and India starting from 2020. The move to begin selling electric vehicles in the two countries represent the automaker's shift towards electric vehicles as it attempts to meet stricter environmental regulations. The report, citing Hiroji Onishi, Toyota's head of China's operations, claims that Toyota will design its own EV for the Chinese market and is also considering selling electric cars that were developed by its local partner under its name.
While Toyota will develop its own electric vehicle for China, the automaker doesn't have any plans to follow the same procedure for India. According to Bloomberg, Toyota and Suzuki have entered into an agreement that will see Toyota get electric cars from Suzuki to sell in India. The mystery there, though, is that Suzuki currently doesn't have an electric vehicle on sale.
Toyota decision to move towards electric vehicles – it's important to remember that the automaker hasn't made an all-electric car since the RAV4 EV in 2014 – is a "little bit late," claims the automaker's president, Akio Toyoda.
"To respond comprehensively to the expanding demand for EVs in China, we are considering having our joint-venture partners provide us with EVs," said Onishi. "We will also continue to develop every aspect of what China defines as new-energy vehicles, including plug-in hybrids and fuel-cell vehicles."
China's Leading The EV Craze
Needless to say, China has pushed a lot of automakers to produce electric cars, as they are scared of losing sales in the industry's largest market. Daimler plans to develop an EV for China in 2019, Volkswagen is planning to invest roughly $12 billion with its Chinese partners to develop "new-energy vehicles," Ford previously stated that it would invest $754 million with a Chinese partner, and Honda is going to launch a China-only EV in 2018, reports Bloomberg.
If Toyota wants to hold onto its title of being one of the largest automakers in the world, it will have to come out with an electric vehicle for China sometime in the near future.
Vineeth Joel Patel
Joel Patel has been covering all aspects of the automotive industry for four years as an editor and freelance writer for various websites. When it comes to cars, he enjoys covering the merger between technology and cars. In his spare time, Joel likes to watch baseball, work on his car, and try new foods
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