Toyota, one of the giants in the automotive industry, has set its sights on electric vehicles (EVs) and is dedicated to developing its next generation of electric cars. In a groundbreaking move, Toyota established its “BEV Factory” in May, a specialized unit that brings together the development, production, and business aspects of EV manufacturing under one roof.
Leading this ambitious endeavor is Takero Kato, the president of Toyota’s BEV Factory. Kato, in a recent interview, revealed the brand’s commitment to building competitive EVs through collaborations with external partners. One of the noteworthy partnerships is with BYD, a renowned EV manufacturer based in China.
The journey began in 2018 when Kato encountered the outstanding Chinese components during a visit to BYD. Witnessing the advanced equipment and manufacturing processes not commonly used in Japan, Kato realized the need to enhance Toyota’s capabilities. When the opportunity arose to work with BYD on a joint project, Kato wholeheartedly accepted the challenge.
With Kato at the helm, Toyota and BYD embarked on the development of the first electric Toyota sedan, the bZ3. The collaboration allowed Kato and his team to immerse themselves in the world of cutting-edge technology and fast-paced development prevalent in China. It was a transformative experience that compelled Toyota to embrace constant change and flexibility in their approach to EV development.
The result of this fruitful alliance was the bZ3, an electric sedan co-developed by Toyota and BYD. It features BYD Blade batteries, an electric motor, and an electric control system, providing an impressive CLTC range of over 600 km. Built on the e-TNGA platform, which also powers the Toyota bZ4X and Subaru Solterra, the bZ3 represents a significant milestone in Toyota’s journey towards a greener future.
With the successful launch of the bZ3, Toyota has garnered immense interest, receiving over 5,000 orders on its first day of sales. This positive response has emboldened Toyota to further accelerate its EV development and efficiency. The automaker plans to introduce next-generation EVs in 2026, incorporating advanced batteries, a new platform, and enhanced manufacturing techniques.
With Takero Kato leading the charge, Toyota is poised to revolutionize the EV market. By embracing collaboration with external partners like BYD, Toyota is determined to push the boundaries of EV technology, ensuring a sustainable future for transportation.
1. What is the purpose of Toyota’s “BEV Factory”?
Toyota’s “BEV Factory” is dedicated to developing Toyota’s next-generation electric vehicles by consolidating the development, production, and business aspects of EV manufacturing in a single unit.
2. Who is Takero Kato?
Takero Kato is the president of Toyota’s BEV Factory. He is responsible for leading the development of Toyota’s next-gen EVs and spearheading collaborations with external partners.
3. What is the significance of the collaboration between Toyota and BYD?
The collaboration between Toyota and BYD has been instrumental in shaping Toyota’s electric sedan, the bZ3. BYD’s advanced components and manufacturing processes have influenced Toyota’s approach to EV development, prompting a shift towards constant change and adaptability.
4. What are some key features of the Toyota bZ3?
The Toyota bZ3 is an electric sedan co-developed with BYD. It features BYD Blade batteries, an electric motor, and an electric control system, offering a CLTC range of over 600 km. The bZ3 is built on the e-TNGA platform, which also powers the Toyota bZ4X and Subaru Solterra.
5. What are Toyota’s future plans for EV development?
Toyota intends to release next-generation EVs in 2026, incorporating advanced batteries, a new platform, and improved manufacturing techniques. The automaker aims to further enhance the efficiency and performance of its EV lineup in the coming years.