Toyota, the renowned automotive giant, has recently announced aggressive plans to bolster its electric vehicle (EV) production by the end of the decade. Part of this strategy includes the implementation of high-performance lithium-ion batteries into their next-generation EVs by 2026. These batteries are expected to provide faster charg pooing and a remarkable range of about 1000 kilometers (620 miles), which could redefine industry standards for EV range.
This announcement marks a significant shift for Toyota, which has historically been recognized for its hybrid models rather than pure electric vehicles. However, the company’s new technology roadmap suggests a bold transition towards EVs that could potentially place Toyota ahead of the pack in the EV market.In addition to the lithium-ion batteries, Toyota has made noteworthy progress in the field of solid-state battery technology. The automaker plans to bring this technology to the market between 2027 and 2028.
Toyota’s projections for an EV powered by a solid-state battery include an astonishing range of nearly 1,200 kilometers (750 miles) and a charge time of only 10 minutes, significantly faster than the current EV charging standards. Solid-state batteries represent an advancement over traditional lithium-ion batteries as they utilize solid-state electrolytes rather than liquid ones. This shift could result in higher energy density, improved safety, quicker charge times, and longer battery lifespan. Although many automakers have invested in solid-state battery technology, it has proven difficult to scale, primarily due to high manufacturing costs.
In a move to further its EV commitment, Toyota established the BEV Factory in May 2023, an organization specifically dedicated to the production of next-generation battery EVs. This unit is tasked with launching a comprehensive lineup of EVs in 2026, with a goal to sell 1.7 million EV units by 2030. Furthermore, by 2025, Toyota aims to provide an electrified option for all of its Toyota and Lexus models worldwide.
In order to achieve these ambitious production targets, Toyota is adopting innovative approaches to enhance its production capabilities. These include the adoption of Giga casting, a technique pioneered by Tesla that uses large aluminum casting machines to simplify vehicle design and reduce factory investment. Moreover, Toyota is in the process of developing a new modular EV platform and a highly automated assembly line to replace the conventional conveyor belt system. This “self-propelling” assembly line, where vehicles under production navigate the assembly process themselves, could potentially cut process and plant investment in half.
On the software front, Toyota reiterated plans to incorporate its Arene operating system into its vehicles by 2025. This system, which can be updated over-the-air, will be responsible for managing core vehicle capabilities, advanced driver assistance systems, and cockpit functions.
Let’s wait and see when we’ll have access to such high mileage electric cars that effectively eliminate range anxiety. However, the cost of these battery and charging system upgrades will also play a significant role in adoption rates.