Toyota has made a significant contribution to the environment as its hybrid electric technology has reduced CO2 emissions by more than 120 million tonnes worldwide to date compared to sales of equivalent petrol vehicles.
In January 2020, Toyota passed the milestone of selling more than 15 million hybrid electric vehicles worldwide since the Prius was first launched in 1997. Today in Europe, sales of hybrid electric cars have passed the 2.8 million mark with a range of 19 different models on offer across the Toyota and Lexus brands, which in 2019 accounted for 52 per cent of the total volume, and 63 per cent in West Europe.
The Prius was Toyota’s first hybrid car which was launched in 1997 globally
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The range of available hybrid electric vehicles at the global level from Toyota and Lexus now reaches 44. It was 25 years ago that Takeshi Uchiyamada led a team to develop a car for the 21st century, one which would reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other harmful pollutants after which we saw the first-generation Prius being launched in 1997. Today, 15 million hybrid sales later, Toyota has made a significant contribution to the environment as its hybrid electric technology has reduced CO2 emissions by more than 120 million tonnes worldwide to date compared to sales of equivalent petrol vehicles.
The Toyota Vellfire was the company’s most recent launch and it too comes with hybrid technology
Beyond the current 4th generation hybrid system, Toyota is continuing to refine its hybrid technology to achieve even lower emissions and ever-better fuel efficiency. Today, hybrid electric vehicles are affordable, accessible and convenient for customers across a broad spread of European markets.
While Toyota believes that HEVs are an essential part of the future overall mix of electrified vehicles, two decades of electrification experience also feed into the company’s mutli-powertrain strategy. The company provides and will continue to provide various types of electrified vehicles to reduce emissions based on regulations, market infrastructure and ultimately customer demand. Toyota does not see a one ‘winner takes all’ scenario but a future where the different electrified technologies, including hybrids and plug-ins (PHEV), fuel cell (FCEV) and battery electric (BEV) vehicles, all play a part.
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Shigeki Terashi, Chief Officer of Toyota Motor Corporation said, “Of course, we must work hard on improving battery performance and lowering costs (of BEVs), which we are doing. But we must avoid having no plan until we overcome the hurdles related to both BEVs and FCEVs. In the meantime, we can contribute by continuing our work on HEVs.”
To realise this vision in Europe, Toyota is planning to launch 40 new or updated electrified vehicles by 2025, across all technologies, including at least 10 zero emission vehicles. Its hybrid electric vehicles will remain a core part of the powertrain mix meeting customers’ needs and helping drive down emissions together with other types of electrified vehicles.