Blog: Is this Toyota China's Nissan Leaf rival?
Graeme Roberts | 23 October 2015
News just in from China suggests a Toyota joint venture there - via a new China-only brand - is readying what might be a decent five door hatchback rival for Nissan's well-entrenched Leaf EV.
China Car Times said the Guangzhou-Toyota Leahead i1 EV would be launched early in 2016 after making its debut as a concept at the Shanghai show in April.
According to CCT, Leahead is a new sub-brand under the Guangzhou-Toyota joint venture focused on making cheap electric cars for the masses and should not be confused with Ranz, another Chinese Toyota brand.
Busily launching its fuel cell Mirai and the redesigned Prius hybrid at the moment, Toyota has been a bit quiet on the pre EV front and has only, so far, offered one model, effectively an EV version of the now defunct Toyota/Scion iQ.
Toyota is expected to announce a major investment in its Thai passenger car business next month, according to local reports citing the country's deputy prime minister Somkid Jatusripitak....
China's Hunan Liebao Automobile Company plans to invest in a new vehicle assembly facility in south-east Asia as part of a broader plan to expand its operations overseas....
I'm starting to get a small idea of the scale of things here in China, but really, I'm only scratching the surface of this vast country....
Given the startling complexity of obtaining a journalist visa for China - the code 'J2' is now indelibly stamped on my mind - it was with some surprise how swiftly I managed to sail through airport im...