Toyota, that most enigmatic of major automakers, is slowly increasing investment in its struggling electrification efforts, even as it continues to lobby against government climate action, and sings the praises of ICEs in its corporate communications.
The company recently announced plans to invest an additional $2.5 billion in a US facility that will manufacture batteries for both hybrid and electric vehicles. Total investment in Toyota Battery Manufacturing North Carolina, which is set to start operations in 2025, will now amount to $3.8 billion.
“This plant will serve a central role in Toyota’s leadership toward a fully electrified future and will help us meet our goal of carbon neutrality in our vehicles and global operations by 2035,” said Norm Bafunno, Senior VP of Unit Manufacturing and Engineering at Toyota Motor North America.
Meanwhile, a corporate statement asserted that the company would “continue to make every effort to flexibly meet the needs” of customers “in all countries and regions by offering multiple powertrains and providing as many options as possible.” The web site of Toyota Europe states: “The internal combustion engine continues to be the most popular means of powering vehicles and it will continue to play a role for the next 20 to 30 years.”
The automaker also announced new investment of around $3 billion in the Himeji, Japan facility of Prime Planet Energy & Solutions and other Toyota plants.
Last year, Toyota announced planned global investment of approximately $70 billion in its electrification efforts.