Toyota introduced the first hybrids, but has pursued fuel cells over batteries
Report says automaker actively working to slow EV mandates
For years, Toyota was the leader in making vehicles more green. It had the Prius, it had fuel-cell research, and it had the market for low-emissions models. Now a new report says that Toyota is actively working to delay zero-emissions vehicles.
The report from the New York Times begins with an executive for the automaker at a closed-door meeting with congressional staff members where he is said to have argued in favour of more hybrids and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles instead of a full transition to EV. The former seems almost obsolete with the rise of EVs and the latter remains expensive and difficult after decades and billions in spending.
Toyota has opposed strengthening emissions standards and ZEV mandates in the U.S, UK, EU, and Australia, says the report. Toyota in India publically criticized that country’s EV target. The automaker sided with the Trump administration’s battle to end the California Clean Air Act and Toyota sued the Mexican government to try and block that country’s increased fuel economy standards.
In the report, Toyota spokesperson Eric Booth said that “[Toyota] agree and embrace the fact that all-electric vehicles are the future,” but that the company thinks “too little attention is being paid to what happens between today, when 98 percent of the cars and trucks sold are powered at least in part by gasoline, and that fully electrified future.”
Toyota sells no EVs in major markets other than China, though it has made multiple recent announcements and partnerships to work to bring some more EVs to market by 2025. In the meantime, expect Toyota to continue to try and make hydrogen happen, something that has proven so far elusive.