Toyota is Rethinking its EV Strategy as New CEO Takes Charge

Japan’s Toyota Motor Corporation is considering a complete overhaul as it plans a transition to a new, specialized platform for battery electric vehicles after making significant changes to its executive team, as reported by Reuters.

According to the report, at his first briefing as CEO on coming Friday, Koji Sato may reveal that new EV architecture is being developed. However, it was not immediately clear whether the idea had been formally approved. If implemented, a new EV platform would be the outcome of a thorough evaluation of Toyota’s electric-car strategy conducted last year.

Related: Toyota to Readjust its EV Strategy to Compete with Tesla and BYD

Toyota has been slow to push hard into battery electrics, but such a step would bring the automaker in line with other worldwide competitors. The e-TNGA system, its current production architecture, was introduced in 2019 and produces electric vehicles on the same assembly line as petrol cars and hybrids. The e-TNGA, however, cannot match the cost savings achieved by Tesla through its gigantic Giga Press casting machines and other manufacturing advancements.

koji sato

Sato, Toyoda’s hand-picked successor, reportedly attended an internal presentation recently that focused on the need for a dedicated battery-electric platform, a more competitive system to manage heat generated by the battery, as well as other innovations inspired by Tesla’s playbook.

Related: Tesla Earns 8 Times More Profit per Car than Toyota

According to the source, Shigeki Terashi, the former chief competitive officer in charge of the EV strategy assessment, provided the briefing. As per reports, a number of initiatives that were intended to use the e-TNGA platform are currently being deferred or canceled.

akio toyoda and koji sato of toyoda motor corp at tokyo auto salon 2023

Critics believe that Toyota needs to make a change now. The delayed adoption of EVs by Toyota has also raised some internal concerns among some of its suppliers. One executive at a Toyota supplier who wished to remain anonymous said that some have been considering expanding their business with other manufacturers in order to reduce their risk when it comes to EVs. However, depending on Toyota’s revised strategy, that might alter, the executive added.

Source: Reuters

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