- Toyota defends hybrid powertrain
- Not opposed to BEVs, but not the only solution.
- A diversified approach is needed, says Toyota.
Toyota has recently been the subject of discussion in the automotive industry with the EV Council, Green peace And others cite the brand’s lack of participation in reducing transportation emissions.
But the firm’s vice president of sales, marketing and franchising, Sean Henley, is adamant that Toyota is not opposed to the transition to BEVs, citing the introduction of the all-electric BZ4x next year – expected around the same time as Volkswagen. Australia’s first EV, ID .4.
However, Henley stressed that the forced and unilateral transition to EVs will leave some buyers behind. “If you want to take everyone on a journey, where you’re reducing the footprint, you have options,” he said.
Toyota sees BEVs as the answer, but not the only one.
In the supply-constrained new car market, chip shortages have been blamed for increasingly long lead times. But there are also restrictions on raw materials — especially those needed to make batteries, as Henley said.
Precious metals for making batteries are currently in extremely short supply. So the whole notion that BEVs are flying out of factories, and that’s the only solution, well I would challenge that to: Where are you going to get the metals to make all those batteries in the next five years? ?
“So diversity of technology, diversity of powertrains is very important to us. It’s not that we’re against BEVs. We weren’t. In fact, we’re going to launch one in the second half of next year,” Henley said. .
Why does Toyota think a hybrid model works now?
Self-charging and plug-in hybrid vehicles are still guilty of tailpipe emissions. The 2023 Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid emits 97g CO2/km, just under the 2030 mandate recommended by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), but 29 percent less than the petrol-only car’s claim (136 CO2/km).
The wheels Hanley was asked why he thought hybrids had been so successful with Australian new car buyers. Apart from their availability, he added: “I believe a hybrid powertrain is a viable, affordable alternative at this time.
“That’s not what it means. [hybrid] The only type of technology will be, it certainly won’t be, we’re seeing this expansion of electricity now. But, of course, the thing about hybrid technology is, it’s practical, it’s affordable, it doesn’t require any infrastructure to support it that we don’t have… and there’s no anxiety associated with it. This is the technology we are used to.
Hanley said Toyota will electrify all of its product lines by 2023 – save for GR performance – including plug-in hybrids (PHEVs). The brand currently sells the RAV4 Prime overseas, but has not announced any Australian plans.
“In the market we operate in, we believe that right now, the solution is product diversification.. In other words, we will have battery electric (BEV), hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV) and PHEVs for some customers. By 2030, every Toyota in our range – apart from the GR Performance range – will be electrified.
So far in 2022, Australians have bought 63,899 self-charging and plug-in hybrid vehicles, compared to 21,771 EVs. Battery EVs increased their YTD sales by a staggering 510% compared to 2021, while hybrid sales grew by 7.3%.
Hybrids are all well and good, but what about polluting diesels?
While Toyota Australia sells some of the most efficient SUVs and passenger cars such as hybrid RAV4s and Corollas, it also caters to the polluting ute market, with its HiLux light commercial vehicle being Australia’s best-selling vehicle. There is a car.
For example, the diesel 4X4 HiLux Produces 207g CO2/km, twice as much as the hybrid Corolla. The Land Cruiser 79 Series produces a whopping 281g CO2/km. In total, Toyota customers bought 45,649 of these vehicles this year (excluding the Hilux 4×2).
We asked Henley how Toyota would strike the balance, and he replied: “From our perspective, we have to come up with a solution that allows these vehicles to do what they were designed to do. are gone, but reduce your carbon footprint, and eventually get it to zero.
“And that’s why we’re saying, converting to BEVs tomorrow — which is an exaggeration — or even five to 10 years is not a practical solution.”
Toyota is in the process of trialling a pair of converted Land Cruiser 70 series as mining fleet vehicles with BEV powertrains for BHP.
Henley said the electrified 70 Series could be part of that solution if tailored to the needs of commercial stakeholders. Additionally, the Tundra full-size pickup currently in Australia uses a hybrid powertrain.
“The point is: carbon is the enemy here, not the powertrain. We are fully supportive of some mandate or legislation around CO2. [targets]… This is not what the debate is about. If You get to a carbon neutral position but How. Toyota is not at all opposed to battery electric vehicles”, said Mr Henley.