Toyota has been slow to jump on the electric-vehicle bandwagon but is now planning multiple models powered by batteries, including some to be built at its U.S. plants.
To ensure adequate local supply of batteries for these upcoming EVs as well as plug-in hybrids, Toyota this week announced plans to invest $3.4 billion in battery production in the U.S. through 2030. The investment is part of a wider global investment in battery development and production totaling $13.5 billion.
Here in the U.S., Toyota's battery production will be overseen by a new company to be established by Toyota Motor North America in partnership with the Toyota Tsusho trading company. Production of the first facility, which will supply batteries for hybrids, is due to start in 2025 and around 1,750 jobs are projected to be created.
Further details on the facility, including details on the location and production capacity, will be announced at a later date.
Toyota BZ4X concept - 2021 Shanghai auto show
Toyota predicts that by 2030 around 70% of its sales will be electrified vehicles, which in the case of Toyota includes hybrid vehicles, battery-electric vehicles, and hydrogen-electric vehicles. To meet this target, Toyota is planning to offer 70 electrified vehicles by as early as 2025, with 15 of these to be powered by batteries.
Of these 15, seven will be models for Toyota's recently launched BZ sub-brand for electric vehicles. The first BZ model, the BZ4X, is due on sale in the U.S. by mid-2022. It will arrive alongside a Subaru version dubbed the Solterra. Toyota has also confirmed it is working on electric pickup trucks.
On the same day as Toyota's announcement, Stellantis said it will work with LG Energy Solution to build a battery plant with an 40-gigawatt-hour annual capacity in North America. The plant is expected to come online by early 2024. A location will be announced at a later date.
Over in Europe, Stellantis has formed the new company Automotive Cells Company with Mercedes-Benz and TotalEnergies to build enough plants for 120 gigawatt-hours by the end of the decade.