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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: