Toyota boss doesn’t want to ban the internal combustion engine
European and Korean car makers are forging ahead with the next generation of cars, but the world’s biggest maker isn’t as convinced.
Toyota’s global boss isn’t a fan of banning petrol and diesel powered cars.
Akio Toyodo recently told reporters that “carbon is our enemy, not the internal combustion engine”, taking a different stance to European manufacturers.
The remark is in reference to certain jurisdictions such as the European Union banning the sale of internal combustion engines from 2035 in favour of full electric vehicles.
This is part of the EU’s drive to dramatically reduce carbon emissions by at least 55 per cent of 1990 levels by 2030 and to have net zero emissions by 2050.
Toyoda says Toyota and Japan have had great success in reducing carbon emissions over the past 20 years by electrifying its range of vehicles through hybrid vehicles. Toyoda said vehicle emissions have reduced by 23 per cent over the past two decades in Japan because of these vehicles.
Hybrids use a conventional petrol engine combined with a small battery and electric motor to reduce fuel use. Nearly every Toyota model on sale in Australia offers a hybrid version, with many experiencing long wait lists due to rising popularity in the petrol-electric vehicles.
Toyoda said that companies need maximise the technology they have now to reduce emissions immediately and more time and resources should be put into technological innovation in other industries.
Car makers such as Hyundai, Kia and Volkswagen are spending billions in developing electric cars over the next decade.
Toyota has been slower in developing fully electric cars.
The Japanese giant only revealed its first dedicated EV concept earlier this year, dubbed the bZ4X, at the Shanghai motor show.
The company plans to have seven bZ models launching globally by 2025.
Currently, Toyota offers about 55 electrified models globally. By 2025, the global line-up will be expanded to approximately 70 models including hybrid, plug-in hybrid, battery electric and fuel cell vehicles. About 15 of those will be pure electric vehicles.
Rivals such as Hyundai are far ahead of Toyota with two electric vehicles – the Ioniq and Kona EV – already in market. The first of the next-generation of EVs, the exciting Hyundai Ioniq 5, is arriving later this month in Australia.
European markers such as Volkswagen and Mercedes are going full throttle toward electrification.
Toyota is also developing hydrogen-powered vehicles such as the Mirai Fuel Cell vehicle. A fleet of Mirai’s are being used in Australia to test the technology which converts hydrogen into electricity with water the only tailpipe emission.
Hyundai and Kia are the only two other big car brands to be forging ahead with this technology at the same rate. Hyundai has a fleet of Nexo Fuel Cells vehicles testing in Australia, too.