Toyota is targeting BEV at short distance drivers

Toyota is targeting BEV at short distance drivers

Toyota said it would present its new, production-ready Ultra-compact Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) at Future Expo, a special exhibition at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show (23 October to 4 November).

The show date is ahead of the vehicle's planned commercial launch in Japan in late 2020.

The new BEV is described as "a next generation mobility solution designed for short distance travel with limited impact on the environment".

"We want to create a mobility solution that can support Japan's ageing society and provide freedom of movement to people at all stages of life," said Akihiro Yanaka, head of development.

"With the Ultra-compact BEV, we are proud to offer customers a vehicle that not only allows for greater autonomy, but also takes up less space, creates less noise and limits environmental impact."

The two-seater Ultra-compact BEV is designed to meet the mobility needs of people who make regular, short-distance trips, such as elderly people, newly licensed drivers, or business people visiting local customers. It has a driving range of approximately 100km (62 miles) on a single charge and maximum speed of 60km/h (37mph). It has an extremely tight turning radius.

Toyota is pairing its planned 2020 launch of the Ultra-compact BEV with a new business model that aims to promote the wider adoption of battery electric vehicles in general. This includes scrutinising every step of the battery's life cycle, from manufacture through sale, resale or re-use to recycling, to maximise its value.

In the near term, Toyota will focus on expanded leasing initiatives, designed to recapture used batteries for evaluation and re-use as appropriate in used vehicles, as service parts, or in non-automobile applications.

Toyota is also developing peripheral services for BEVs, such as recharging stations and insurance.

The automaker is also exploring applications for its compact, short-distance BEVs beyond individual mobility. For example, the Ultra-compact BEV is well suited to meet the mobility needs of local authorities in Japan that are working to create safe, unrestricted and environmentally efficient transport options in urban and mountain communities.

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