Toyota will forgo further development in pure electric vehicles in search of what it sees as more promising alternative fuel vehicles.
The automaker will focus on the development of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles according to Toyota North America CEO Jim Lentz. Recently, Toyota ended its partnership with Tesla, which supplied batteries for the RAV4 EV. The Japanese automaker sees battery electric vehicles as viable only in “a select way, in short-range vehicles that take you that extra mile, from the office to the train, or home to the train, as well as being used on large campuses.”
Toyota believes hybrids, plug-in hybrids and fuel cells are more viable options than EVs as long-range primary use vehicles. Toyota has committed to building a fuel cell infrastructure in California, where it will launch its fuel cell vehicles to compete with Hyundai and Honda. According to a study conducted by Toyota, it will take 68 refueling stations to meet the needs of 10,000 California fuel cell customers. The state is aiming to have 50 stations in operation by the end of 2016.
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