TOKYO, NNA - Toyota Motor Corp. will jointly develop electric vehicles, initially sedans and low-floor SUVs, with Chinese auto and battery maker BYD Co., creating a partnership despite their rivalry, following on Toyota’s deal with another Chinese manufacturer to buy electric vehicle batteries.
The Japanese auto giant signed an agreement with BYD, a leader in new energy vehicles, for the joint development of battery electric vehicles, to be launched under the Toyota brand name by 2025. The agreement includes onboard batteries; the company said in a statement on Friday – just two days after announcing a battery supply deal with Contemporary Amperex Technology Co., a leading EV battery maker.
Toyota has plans to market more than 10 types of electric vehicles worldwide in the first half of the 2020s, with a total global electric vehicle 2030 sales target of more than 5.5 million units.
“We have just begun discussions on the joint development. Details of the project will be worked out later,” said a spokesman for Toyota (China) Investment Co., a Toyota Motor subsidiary in China. He added that the discussions would include the possible setting up of a joint venture.
In 2008 BYD, founded in 1995, became the first company in the world to sell mass-produced plug-in hybrid electrified vehicles (PHEVs). BYD’s sales of battery electric vehicles and PHEVs have ranked worldwide top for four consecutive years since 2015.