Toyota will take the wraps off an updated version of its FT-EV electric car at the Tokyo Auto Show in just a few weeks. Called the FT-EV II, the car is designed for urban use with a total range of 90 km (56 miles) and a top speed of 100 km/h (62 mph).
This news comes just days after Toyota Europe’s R&D boss downplayed the significance of electric cars.
Toyota says the FT-EV II is even smaller than the iQ city car, and yet has more interior room with seating for four people. Sliding side doors also make it easier to use in tight urban settings.
As for the operation, Toyota says all aspects of the car can be controlled though a joystick, including acceleration, braking and steering. In fact, part of the reason for the four-person space is the removal of the pedals, giving extra leg room for the driver.
The FT-EV II is still a concept car (like the strange Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea-themed joystick didn’t give that away), but Toyota is moving closer to bringing an electric city car to market in the next few years.
Toyota will also showcase its Prius PHEV as well as the FT-86 sports car concept at the 2009 Tokyo Auto Show starting October 21st.
GALLERY: Toyota FT-EV II
Official release after the jump:
FT-EV II (world premiere) The FT-EV II is a compact EV designed for short distances, and it is based on the idea of a future mobility society in which EVs are common, and means of transport are divided according to purpose, the characteristics of the energy to be used and the status of the supply infrastructure. The FT-EV II features a high-quality package extremely convenient in urban settings.
Ultra-efficient package with body more compact than ultra-compact “iQ”, but still with seating for four
Drive-by-wire technology enables joystick operation of all functions including accelerator, brakes and steering wheel; ample legroom provided by elimination of accelerator and brake pedals
Vehicle designed with low front cowl and auxiliary window below windshield for outstanding forward visibility; further consideration paid to safety around vehicle led to see-through LED rear combination taillights
Electric sliding doors on both sides facilitate ingress and egress, particularly in narrow spaces
Top-speed of over 100km/h
Easy coverage of over 90km on fully charged battery—ample for everyday use
Extremely quiet and comfortable ride with smooth acceleration, thanks to TMC-cultivated motor-control technology, which is part of the hybrid system at core of TMC’s environmental technologies
| | | | | | | | | | Vehicle | Length | Width | Height | Wheelbase | Seating | | | | | ————————–+————-+————-+————-+————–+———– | | | | | | | | | | FT-EV II | 2,730 mm | 1,680 mm | 1,490 mm | 1,900 mm | 4 | | | | |