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Toyota to spend $13.7 bil. on battery development, supply by 2030

This Oct. 23, 2019 file photo shows the logo of Toyota Motor Corp. (Mainichi)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Toyota Motor Corp. said Tuesday it will spend 1.5 trillion yen ($13.7 billion) by 2030 on the development and supply of batteries for electric and hybrid vehicles, as it pushes for carbon neutrality and competition intensifies over low emissions technology.

    The world's biggest carmaker by volume is looking to nearly quadruple its global sales of electrified vehicles including hybrids to 8 million units in 2030 to meet stricter emission regulations in global markets.

    Of the 1.5 trillion yen in investments, about 1 trillion yen will mainly be spent on increasing the number of production lines for the batteries to 70 or more by 2030, according to the automaker.

    It indicates that about 8 percent of capital spending and nearly 5 percent of the research and development budget will be battery related every year, given a Toyota forecast to allocate about 1.4 trillion yen and 1.2 trillion yen in the respective fields for the business year through March 2022.

    "We will aim to achieve a per-vehicle cost of 50 percent or less compared to now" in the late 2020s, Masahiko Maeda, Toyota's chief technology officer, said in an online press briefing.

    Maeda said the company aims to achieve the cost-cut goal by slashing roughly 30 percent in the cost of manufacturing the batteries such as by developing materials that can replace cobalt and nickel, and improving power efficiency of vehicles by 30 percent.

    The automaker also targets raising the endurance performance of the battery for the Toyota bZ4X, a new model of battery electric vehicles to be launched around mid-2022, to one of the highest levels in the world.

    As for the supply of batteries, Toyota will increase the total supply to 200 gigawatts per year by 2030, more than 30-fold from the current 6 gigawatts and higher than the previously planned 180 gigawatts, Maeda said.

    Toyota said it has not changed its target to commercialize all solid-state batteries, which enable a longer travel distance for electrified cars per charge, by the early 2020s.

    The company said in May that of the 8 million units of electrified cars it aims to sell by 2030, 2 million will be battery electric vehicles and fuel cell vehicles.

    Toyota is also decarbonizing its manufacturing process, having said in June it will make all its global factories carbon neutral by 2035, rather than the previously planned 2050. Its parts suppliers are asked to reduce CO2 emissions by around 3 percent in 2021 from a year before.

    Major economies are aiming to achieve carbon neutrality, with Japan pledging to reduce carbon dioxide emissions to net zero by 2050.

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