Toyota Australia expects ‘electric’ vehicles to account for more than half of its sales by 2025, up from 31.5 percent in 2022.
The company won’t be tight-lipped on how many of these will be pure electric vehicles, of which it plans to launch three over the next three years starting with this year’s bZ4x.
However, it expects EV growth in Australia to pick up over the next seven years and not take two decades to become mainstream as it will require hybrids.
Toyota aims to have an electric option for every one of its models by 2030, excluding the GR performance model.
The company has touted the diversity of its electric powertrain options, which currently consist of hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles and will soon include battery electric vehicles.
Gone is the plug-in hybrid, although versions of PHEV models like the RAV4 and Prius are available overseas.
“Plug-in hybrids offer other benefits and you know, [may] become part of the portfolio going forward,” said Sean Hanley, Toyota Australia’s vice president of sales, marketing and franchise operations.
“I often wonder how practical plug-ins are but you know there’s going to be a market out there for them and they serve a purpose in terms of emissions and range and reduce fuel consumption in a much more economical way, so we wouldn’t rule out plug-in hybrids at all.” as an option.”
Toyota sold 72,815 hybrid vehicles in Australia last year, with hybrids now accounting for more than half of RAV4 and Camry sales.
While Toyota offers hybrid versions of its entire crossover lineup, as well as the Yaris, Corolla and Camry, it doesn’t offer any electric vehicles or body-on-frame SUVs.
Indeed, GWM beat Toyota to the punch with the Tank 300 off-roader hybrid car. Although Toyota has shown the upcoming LandCruiser, HiLux and other electric models, it has yet to confirm when this decade it will appear.
The first electrified body-on-frame Toyota is expected to be the Tundra, which is undergoing local testing this year and is firming up for a 2024 market launch. The US-built pickup will be remanufactured locally for right-hand drive.
Toyota has invested heavily in hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and suggests they – along with “potential” H2 conversion vehicles – will increase in number. For now, however, Mirai is being offered on lease to “forward-thinking” organizations.
“You have to think further ahead than just saying, fuel cell electric vehicles powered by hydrogen are a small percentage of the market. Well, I’m sure when we had a horse and cart, and we went to the gas station everybody said ‘how are you going to fill this up?’
“It will take time.”