The Japanese corporation Toyota Motor has been producing the Prius hybrid since 1997; by February of this year, it managed to sell more than 17 million cars with traction electric motors, although the first mass-produced battery electric car of the brand will go on sale only in mid-2022. By the end of the decade, the Japanese giant will invest $ 13.5 billion in the development and production of batteries.
Active cooperation with Panasonic in this area does not prevent Toyota from engaging in its own developments. As explains Reuters with reference to representatives of the corporation, Toyota does not lose hope by the middle of the decade to establish a mass production of batteries with solid-state electrolyte. They are expected to allow faster recharge and longer range of electric vehicles, as well as be more resistant to freezing temperatures, but in preparation for mass production, engineers are faced with the unpleasant effects of thermal expansion in the form of cracks in the battery case. In addition, such batteries are still quite expensive for mass production.
To solve the latter problem, Toyota Motor will try to actively research in the field of materials science. According to the primary source, Toyota is ready to spend $ 13.5 billion to improve the design of batteries and methods of their production by 2030. Ideally, the Japanese company would like to reduce the cost of batteries by 30%. Toyota hybrids will also switch to solid-state batteries over time.
The energy efficiency of the traction batteries should be increased in a similar proportion. In other words, a conventional electric car will be able to travel 30% more on a single charge than before. The brand’s first mass-produced electric vehicle, the Toyota bZ4X, which will be launched in production by the middle of next year, should already demonstrate progress in this direction.
By 2025, the company intends to introduce 15 purebred electric vehicles, and the total number of models equipped with traction motors will reach 70 pieces. Toyota will partner with Subaru, Daihatsu, Suzuki and China’s BYD to build electric vehicles. In fact, the all-electric firstborn of the brand, the bZ4X crossover, was developed in collaboration with Subaru. The electric vehicle will be produced at factories in Japan and China from the middle of next year.