The head of Toyota Motor’s electric vehicle (EV) business informed Reuters the automaker has received inquiries from over 50 companies since announcing earlier week that it would provide free access to patents for EV motors and power control units.
The executive also stated Toyota intends to utilize partnerships to cut by as much as half the outlays for expanded electric and hybrid vehicle components production in the United States, China, and Japan.
“Until now we have been a tier 1 automaker, but now we also aim to become a tier 2 supplier of hybrid systems,” Toyota Executive Vice President Shigeki Terashi stated.
Supplying competitors would greatly increase the scale of production for hardware including power control units and electric motors that are utilized in gasoline-electric hybrids, plug-in hybrids, fully electric vehicles, and fuel cell vehicles, he said.
Toyota last week outlined strategies to offer automakers and auto providers royalty-free access to almost 24,000 electrified vehicle technologies patented by the Japanese automaker.
In an interview on Thursday at Toyota’s international headquarters in Toyota City, Japan, Terashi provided new information about Toyota’s strategy and its anticipated effect on the company’s investment strategies.
By offering to provide rival automakers with parts used in Toyota’s gasoline-sipping hybrid vehicles, Toyota sees a way to cut capital outlay by roughly half for new plants required to construct electric car components for future models, Terashi stated.
“We believe that this approach will decrease investment costs significantly,” he stated.
Terashi stated Toyota projects an increase in demand for electrified vehicles worldwide as regulators insist new vehicles emit significantly less carbon dioxide, and that working with Toyota would provide others a low-cost path to compliance.
Toyota’s internal aim is to sell 5.5 million electrified, Toyota-brand vehicles yearly by 2030, up from about 1.6 million vehicles now, he stated.
Already, Terashi stated, Toyota believes it could reach the 5.5 million goal as soon as 2025. The company is collaborating on plans for a new round of capital spending to expand capacity for producing the hardware needed.