Toyota’s Hino, Volkswagen’s truck form alliance to cut R&D costs

Toyota Hino truck

The truck units of Toyota and Volkswagen are forming an alliance to boost their market positions as commercial automakers face increasing costs to develop lower-emission automobiles and automated driving capabilities.

The strategic tie-up of Toyota subsidiary Hino Motors and Volkswagen Truck & Bus GmbH is the recent in the international vehicle industry, where automakers look forward to jointly tackle the high expenses of developing self-driving vehicles and new transportation services such as ride sharing.

The two truck makers stated on Thursday they will think about collaborating in areas such as diesel and gasoline-electric hybrid engines, connectivity and self-driving technologies, adding their total output could provide economies of scale in research and development (R&D) and also procurement.

“We can join forces and spend R&D money only once instead of twice or three times,” sated Volkswagen Truck & Bus GmbH Chief Executive Officer Andreas Renschler during an event in Tokyo to announce the agreement.

“We see potential to save on our budgets and also to combine our resources to be faster at bringing products to market than we would be alone.”

The companies were not thinking about the possibility of cross- shareholding at the moment, a Hino representative stated.

The tie-up comes following Volkswagen’s purchase of a 16.6 percent stake in Navistar International in 2016. The two partners prepare to release an electric medium-duty truck in North America by next year.

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