Toyota Motor North America said Wednesday it will bring three new electrified vehicles to the U.S. market, as the automaker seeks to win over customers by offering a variety of lower emission and zero-emission cars and SUVs.
Two of the new vehicles will be all electric and one will be a plug-in hybrid, the company said Wednesday. Sales of the vehicles are expected to being in 2022.
The aim, according to Bob Carter, TMNA's executive vice president of sales, is to offer customers multiple choices of powertrain that best suits their needs. The automaker is developing and selling hybrids and plug-in hybrids like the Toyota Prius and Toyota RAV4 and fuel cell vehicles such as the Toyota Mirai.
The company said that by 2025 all of its Toyota and Lexus models will have an electrified option. The automaker is also developing a dedicated battery electric platform called e-TNGA that can be configured to meet different needs.
This all-of-the-above approach is aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and capturing more market share, which Toyota believes can only be achieved through variety. Toyota wants to have 40% of new vehicle sales be electrified models by 2025. By 2030, the company expects that to increase to nearly 70%.
"We believe the fastest way to lower greenhouse gases in the transportation sector is to offer drivers lower carbon choices that meet their needs," Gill Pratt, chief scientist of Toyota Motor Corporation and CEO of Toyota Research Institute, said in a statement. "At every price point and with multiple powertrains, we can put more people in cleaner automobiles across North America to have the greatest near-term impact on total carbon emissions."
The company's internal research, which was built off of a tool that shows the trade-off between GHG Emissions and total cost of ownership, found that emissions of a currently available battery-electric model and a plug-in hybrid model are roughly the same in on-road performance when factoring in pollutants created by electricity production for the average U.S. energy grid used to charge batteries.
Manufacturing is a component of GHG emissions, Toyota noted. Researchers found that the production of a PHEV emits less GHG since it uses a smaller, lighter weight battery. The company also argued that plug-in hybrids are less expensive to buy and own, compared to a BEV.
The company's argument — that BEVs and PHEVs can provide similar environmental benefits — syncs up with its business plan. One of the BEVs will be Toyota branded and imported from Japan at the start of production, according to the automaker.