Toyota Skeptically Charges Up Battery Production

Toyota announced plans Wednesday to invest $5.6 billion in new plants to build electric vehicle batteries in Japan and the United States. But unlike other automakers who are going all-in on EVs, Toyota said it’s still not convinced that’s the best path forward.

The world’s largest automaker in terms of vehicles sold, Toyota has lagged behind most other major global automakers in building fully battery powered EVs, despite its history of being a leader in hybrid gas/electric vehicles more than 20 years. Rivals such as Volkswagen, General Motors and Ford have far more pure battery-powered EV offerings, as well as a significant number of EVs under development.

Toyota has been investing more than other automakers in efforts to develop electric vehicles powered by on-board hydrogen fuel cells rather than rechargeable batteries. The fuel cells’ only emissions would be water vapor, which complies with tougher environmental regulations now being put in place, such as the rules announced by California last week that would ban cars with gas-powered internal combustion engines by 2035.…

Who notes all the automakers are looking to move battery production into the USA in order to position their EV offerings to be eligible for the new Inflation Reduction Act tax credits, which require domestic production for major elements of each vehicle…

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