Battery production is expected to begin between 2024 and 2026, the world’s largest automaker said in a statement on Wednesday.
“This investment aims to enable Toyota to flexibly meet the needs of its diverse customers in all countries and regions by offering multiple powertrains and providing as many options as possible,” Toyota said.
Although Toyota sees hybrid and even hydrogen fuel cell cars as part of a green future. It has accelerated its push to electrify more of its lineup in recent months. In December, it promised to be ready to sell only zero-emission cars in Europe by 2035. That aligns with European Union green deal measures proposed in early 2021.
“This is a positive move,” said Hiroki Ihara, an analyst at Tachibana Securities Co. “In the United States, the shift to electric vehicles is accelerating faster than anticipated and there is also a move to eliminate hybrids.”
With the investment, Toyota plans to increase its combined battery production capacity in Japan and the United States by up to 40 GWh. In Japan, about 400 billion yen will be invested in Prime Planet Energy & Solutions Co.’s Himeji plant and Toyota plants and properties. While in the United States, 325 billion yen will go to a plant in North Carolina.
“Toyota believes there is more than one option to achieve carbon neutrality,” the Japanese automaker said on Wednesday. “He also believes that the means to reduce CO2 emissions as much as possible and as quickly as possible, while protecting the livelihoods of his customers, vary greatly by country and region.”
Automakers and cell phone makers around the world are ramping up battery plant plans to keep up with demand.
Panasonic Holdings Corp., which supplies batteries to Tesla Inc., is in talks to build another plant in the U.S. worth about $4 billion. While Korean battery makers have several plans for U.S. facilities, building four for General Motors Co., two for Stellantis NV, and three for Ford Motor Co.
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