Toyota Eyes EV Production at U.S., European, Thai Plants

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Toyota Motor Corp. head office

NAGOYA (Jiji Press) — Toyota Motor Corp. is considering producing electric vehicles at its plants in the United States, Europe and Thailand, informed sources said Tuesday.

Toyota currently produces its EVs, including the bZ4x SUV, at its domestic and Chinese plants.

To better compete with its rivals, the company now aims to have EV production bases in other markets where EV demand is expected to grow in line with the strengthening of environmental regulations.

In the United States, Toyota plans to make electric SUVs at a plant in Kentucky, with production expected to begin around 2025 to 2026. Toyota is already working on a project with Toyota Tsusho Corp., a trading house in the Toyota group, to build a battery plant in North Carolina that is slated to start operations in 2025 at the earliest.

Batteries produced at the North Carolina plant would be used for EV production at the Kentucky plant.

In Europe, Toyota is considering making small electric SUVs in France, the Czech Republic and Turkey, in response to the European Union’s plan to introduce an effective ban on sales of new gasoline and hybrid vehicles in 2035.

Toyota also plans to start EV production in Thailand by the end of 2023 or later, considering making electric models of its pickup trucks, which are popular in emerging markets, the sources said.

Toyota’s global EV sales totaled only some 24,000 units in 2022. It has announced a plan to raise its EV sales to 3.5 million units in 2030.