Akio Toyoda Trashes EVs and Accelerated Electrification

On the heels of announcing Toyota’s upcoming solid-state battery plans, Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda has some harsh words about electric vehicles. During the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association end-of-year press conference last week, grandson of Toyota founder, Kiichiro Toyoda, turned heads with his surprising views about the accelerated popularity of EVs. 

According to the Wall Street Journal, the CEO voiced his distain for EVs because he believes they will ruin businesses, require massive investments, and emit more carbon dioxide than combustion-engined vehicles. “The current business model of the car industry is going to collapse,” Toyoda added, “the more EVs we build, the worse carbon dioxide gets… When politicians are out there saying, ‘Let’s get rid of all cars using gasoline,’ do they understand this?”

Those are some pretty contradicting statements coming from the CEO considering some of Toyota’s recent announcements. Early this month, Toyota announced it would be introducing a game-changing solid-state battery that is capable of rapid-fast charging times and driving ranges that top Tesla. However, some people thinks that Toyoda’s controversial statements stem from the Japanese government’s possible decision to ban all internal combustion-powered car sales by 2030. There has been no information of whether the ban would include hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles.

Toyoda went on to explain that Japan would deplete its supply of electricity in the summer if every car was running on electric power. Toyoda estimated the required infrastructure to support 100 percent EVs would cost the island nation between $135 billion and $358 billion.

Toyoda ended by noting that most of Japan’s electricity is generated by fossil fuels, thus eliminating the entire concept of “zero-emissions vehicles.” Is it enough to push the ban of ICE in Japan, or is an EV mandate imminent? Only time will tell.

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