By Cao Yingying | China Daily
In July, Toyota announced new partnerships with China’s power battery producer CATL and BYD to focus on the research and development on the new energy vehicle battery.
Last month, BYD and Toyota said they planned to set up a 50-50 joint venture to design and develop battery electric cars as efforts to produce zero-emissions vehicles. The joint venture will be set up in 2020 in China.
The joint venture aims to develop vehicles that run solely on batteries, rather than plug-in hybrid or gasoline-electric vehicles, which also have a combustion engine. The joint venture will develop battery-electric sedans and SUVs, which would will be sold under the Toyota brand in China before 2025.
Wang Bo, senior vice-president of BYD, said that the company’s strong competitiveness in the pure electric market and R&D capability will integrate with Toyota’s advantages in quality and safety and the two will launch pure electric cars that meet the demands of customers as soon as possible.
Toyota’s premium arm, Lexus, has enjoyed a strong performance in China this year. The company held the global premiere of its first ever electric model, the UX 300e SUV, at the Guangzhou auto show last month.
In November, Lexus sold 19,300 vehicles in China, increasing 16.5 percent year-onyear. Its sales in the first 11 months totaled 180,200 in the country.
As China increases support for fuel-cell vehicles, Toyota also plans to develop and launch fuel-cell car models with its joint ventures with Guangzhou-based carmaker GAC and FAW Group in China.
The carmaker also joined hands with Foton Motor Group and Beijing Sino-Hytec, a hightech enterprise focusing on the R&D and industrialization of hydrogen fuel cell engines.
The cooperation will see the hydrogen-powered buses produced by Foton Motor coupled with SinoHytec’s hydrogen fuel cell power system, which uses Toyota’s hydrogen fuel cell stack and other components and parts.