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Toyota spends $ 35 billion on electric cars to close the gap with rivals




The world’s largest carmaker announced on Tuesday that it would invest 4 trillion yen ($ 35.2 billion) in developing battery-powered electric vehicles between 2022 and 2030 in an effort to launch a more serious challenge to rivals such as Tesla (TSLA), GM (GM) and Volkswagen (VLKAF).

A large part of this money will go to the batteries themselves, with the Japanese company committing another half trillion yen ($ 4.4 billion) to the technology on top of the 1[ads1].5 trillion yen ($ 13.2 billion) that was previously announced.

The car manufacturer currently sells only a few thousand battery-electric vehicles each year. But it now plans to roll out as many as 30 new models by 2030, with the goal of selling 3.5 million such vehicles per year by 2030, Toyota President Akio Toyoda said at a press conference in Tokyo.

That will be over a third of the company’s sales last year, which amounted to approximately 9 million cars worldwide.

The luxury brand Lexus is a big part of the new plan, with Toyota estimating 1 million global EV sales by 2030. Toyota wants all Lexus sales in Europe, North America and China to be battery-powered electric vehicles by the end of this decade, and globally by 2035.

Picking up

While Toyota has been a pioneer in hybrid and even hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicles, it has been much slower than some other major automakers to expand into the all-electric vehicle market.
Electric vehicles, including hybrid and fuel cell cars, accounted for almost 28% of the company’s sales in the six months ended September. But battery-powered electric cars were a small part of that, accounting for only 0.1% of total sales.
Among the future electric cars Lexus President Koji Sato talked about was a new Lexus sports car.  Toyota plans for the luxury brand Lexus to only sell electric vehicles by 2035.

In the early 2000s, one of Toyota’s most recognizable hybrids, the Prius, was received with the kind of excitement and waiting lists now seen for Tesla models. Other car manufacturers were criticized for not making similar models at the time.

Almost 20 years after the sensation, however, it is Toyota that plays catch-up in all-electric cars and SUVs.

Standing in front of more than a dozen electric vehicles on Tuesday, Toyoda called the new range “the showroom of the future” and said the manufacturer would also try to make its factories carbon neutral by 2035.

Volkswagen increases the cost of electric cars to 100 billion dollars
It increases an earlier promise from the company to become carbon neutral by 2050, which means that the cars and production processes will not add carbon dioxide to the earth’s atmosphere. Other industry players, such as GM (GM) and Mercedes (I will), has made similar promises.

“The future we showed you today is by no means far off,” Toyoda told reporters, adding that most of the models shown on Tuesday will be released in the next few years.

But competition is intensifying. Just last week, Volkswagen announced that it would raise the budget for electric vehicles to $ 100 billion. The German giant, which has long been virtually with Toyota in global sales, also said it hoped 25% of global car sales would be electric by the end of 2026.

Glowing demand

EV batteries are also becoming a hot topic among investors elsewhere in Asia.

This month, LG Energy Solution, a battery supplier for such as Hyundai (HYMTF) and Siemens (SIEGY), announced that it would go public in South Korea, aiming to raise up to 12.75 trillion won ($ 10.8 billion).

The market debut, which is expected to take place in January, will be the country’s largest listed exchange, according to Dealogic.

In a statement, LG Energy Solution chief Young Soo Kwon said the company’s listing was about “preventively responding to demand for the lithium-ion battery industry, expected to see rapid growth.”

– Peter Valdes-Dapena contributed to this report.



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