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Toyota Motor Corporation’s announcement this week of the intention to have 30 electric vehicle models available globally by 2030, provides Toyota New Zealand with the opportunity to achieve its objective of leaving no customer behind in the transition to a low carbon economy.
On Tuesday night Akio Toyoda, Toyota President, revealed a new line up of hybrid and battery electric vehicles, including sub-compact hatches, saloons, SUVs, high performance sports cars, a ute, and a bus. At the same time Mr Toyoda announced a NZ$100 billion investment into development and production of hybrid and battery electric vehicles.
Toyota New Zealand Chief Executive Neeraj Lala says Toyota had been consistent with the message over the past three years that a full range of powertrains will be critical to achieving a low carbon economy in New Zealand. This strategy includes a full line-up of BEVs, and these models will be globally available, including New Zealand.
“The announcement by Akio Toyoda this week supports these messages and the recommendations we have been proposing to key Government officials. We have maintained that hybrids will continue to spearhead our transition in the short-term,” Mr Lala says.
“However, the announcement this week also demonstrates how serious we are in the expansion of BEVs. Most importantly, the investment and direction state our commitment to achieving carbon neutrality.”
“We will work hard to identify when supply will be available, ensure the models we introduce are affordable for kiwis, and most critically achieve the Toyota safety standards our customers have come to expect from our brand,” he says.
The transition to full electrification will take time from an availability perspective. In the past month, Toyota has announced considerable investment in battery technology and production. However, 3.5 million BEVs by 2030 is just a baseline target and signals just how serious Toyota is about electrification. Global availability will be dependent on emissions and energy policies.
“There has been concerns regarding our commitment to electrification. However, we have been working on BEVs for more than 30 years, and I am confident we are heading in the right direction and this announcement supports that. The BZ series will lead the shift to BEVs for Toyota and New Zealand, and Lexus will provide compact cars like the new Lexus UX300e for daily use.
“We will complete 2021 as market leaders for 34 consecutive years in New Zealand as Kiwis continue to support the broad range of models we offer. What is more pleasing to me, is that we will deliver more than 11,000 hybrids to customers, which is a new record,” Mr Lala says.