Although Toyota has announced a massive investment in electric vehicles, by contrast, former president Akio Toyoda is still resistant to electrification in the public place.
Akio Toyoda, who is still president of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA), has insisted for years that the auto industry should take a more diversified approach to carbon emissions. During the recent G7 summit, at the JAMA exhibition led by Akio Toyoda and attended by Suzuki, Isuzu, Yamaha Honda and Mazda, he once again stressed his resistance to full electrification and won the support of a number of participating Japanese companies.
"Japan's auto industry is developing a full range of products ranging from passenger cars to light vehicles, large vehicles and motorcycles around the world," Akio Toyoda said at a jama press conference with the Japan Association of Automobile Manufacturers. The advantage of Japan's auto industry lies in the diversity of technologies such as battery electric vehicles, hydrogen and hybrid power. . We need to be close to the reality of each country and region, respect differences and live with diversity. To do this, we need a variety of technologies. Japanese enterprises should refine their unique technological advantages and improve their competitiveness. I believe that the Japanese auto industry has many ways to use this technology in areas where it is needed. "
This is not the first time Akio Toyoda has attacked electric cars. He once said that "electric cars are not the only way to achieve the goal of carbon neutralization in the world", and even criticized that electric vehicles are neither environmentally friendly nor energy-efficient, saying that electric vehicles are "over-hyped" and calling for increased energy diversity. promote the potential role of hydrogen and biofuels.
Akio Toyoda's comments do have some rationality, but such a slightly conservative attitude has got Toyota into controversy in the wave of global electrification. Even he Xiaopeng publicly insinuated on Weibo that Toyota would become the Nokia of the auto industry. Perhaps because of this "too stubborn" attitude, it is no longer suitable to lead Toyota forward. Akio Toyoda has now stepped down as president of Toyota, putting an end to his 13-year career as president, but judging from his latest comments, Akio Toyoda has always been at odds with electric cars.
Of course, Akio Toyoda's comments also seem to be forced. In 2022, Toyota sold 10.48 million vehicles worldwide, surpassing Volkswagen to become the world's number one car company for three consecutive years. However, as the leader of cars, Toyota is not competitive in the electric car market.
In December 2021, Toyota launched 15 electric vehicles in one breath, eager to enter the already large-scale electric vehicle market, but from the performance of the first electric car on the market, the bZ4X looks more like a product that is unwilling to be made under the duress of the times. Under the background of the accelerated layout of global automakers, the Toyota bZ4X, the first pure electric model, came into being, which is actually better than Toyota's existing products, whether in appearance, interior or technology configuration, but compared with domestic brands, its slightly higher price and names that are difficult to remember by consumers make it difficult for it to make a difference. According to the CAC data, FAW-Toyota sold 1166 bZ4X vehicles in 2022, Guangzhou Automobile-Toyota bZ4X sold 1624 vehicles, and the two models sold 2301 vehicles and 4270 vehicles respectively from January to April 2023.
Toyota President Henoji Sato unveiled a new electrification strategy on April 7: Toyota and Lexus will launch 10 new electric vehicles and a new pure electric platform in the next three years, in order to reach the sales target of 1.5 million electric vehicles by 2026. 'The auto industry is facing a life-and-death test and the competition is very fierce, 'Mr. Sato said at a press conference.' we want to jump out of our existing concept, 'Mr. Sato said at a press conference. It also said that if Toyota wants to succeed in the transformation, it must try all possibilities, adhere to the car-building idea of "regional best" and "continuous optimization", and finally achieve the strategic goal of the mobile travel company.
In fact, Toyota also wants to build electric cars, but obviously, the current situation does not seem to be good.
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