Toyota Lays Out Its EV Battery Road Map

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Toyota Lays Out Its EV Battery Road Map

Post by onyxdragon » ... ery-plans/

(chart image in the link)
Mike Duff for wrote:
Toyota Lays Out Its EV Battery Road Map, Including a Solid-State Battery (Eventually)
  • The Japanese brand was late to the EV party but plans a dramatic expansion in models and innovative battery technology; it's planning to sell 3.5 million EVs annually across 30 different Toyota and Lexus model lines by 2030.
  • Long-range battery packs will provide up to 500 miles of range by 2026 and 620 miles by 2027.
  • Toyota is aiming to introduce solid-state batteries in 2027, which will be capable of ultra-fast 10 minute recharge times from 10 to 80 percent state of charge.
Toyota recently announced it had passed the benchmark of having built more than 300 million cars since the company was founded 88 years ago. But despite having pioneered hybrid powertrains, the company's high-level skepticism towards EVs means that very few of those cars have been fully electric; the Toyota bZ4X and Lexus RZ450e have only gone on sale in the last year. It is one of the last major automakers to enter the EV space.

But following the arrival of new CEO Koji Sato, Toyota has dramatically increased its commitment to electrics, with the aim being to catch rivals with a wave of new models and innovative battery technology.

One of the first new EVs will be a three-row SUV (pictured above) that is set to be produced at Toyota's Georgetown, Kentucky, plant from 2025, and which will be aimed at the same part of the market as the Kia EV9. Toyota says this new model will use batteries produced in its own factory in Liberty, North Carolina, a plant that already employs 2000 people but is set to increase to 5000.

By 2030 Toyota says it will be able to make 30 GWh of batteries in North Carolina each year, enough for 375,000 80.0-kWh packs, but with production split across 10 different lines to produce different-sized packs for EV and plug-in-hybrid models. There will be four other lines making straight hybrid packs, and we can safely bet that the vast majority of Toyota production, and possibly all of it, will be hybridized by then.

Toyota says it is committed to making 3.5 million EVs annually by 2030, with 30 different models across Toyota and Lexus brands. It is clear a significant number of those will be produced in the States.

Toyota's battery technology is also going to develop quickly, with more details shared during a recent visit C/D made to Toyota's Shimoyama engineering center in Japan. The first evolution will be the one promised by the Toyota FT-Se and Lexus LF-ZC concepts that were shown at this year's Tokyo auto show: an ultra-compact high-performance next-generation lithium-ion battery that will be able to sit under the floors of coupes and sedans without adding excessive height. In their lowest configuration, Toyota engineers say that the battery pack will be just 3.9 inches tall, something made possible in part by side-mounted rather than top-mounted terminals.

Fast-Charging, 400-Mile Batteries . . .

This performance pack will first be used in 2026, with Toyota saying it will be 20 percent cheaper to produce than the bZ4X's pack, but also that it will allow a 10 to 80 percent fast-charge time of around 20 minutes. (The engineers we spoke to also suggested it will have a 900-volt architecture.) In its largest configuration, and in the most efficient vehicle, this performance pack will give over 400 miles of EPA range. (All range figures in the above image are quoted assuming the more generous WLTP standard, but EPA range figures are typically about 15 percent lower, so we've adjusted Toyota's claims downward accordingly to make them comparable to those of other EVs sold in the U.S.)

. . . and Cheaper, Space-Efficient Batteries

A cheaper next-generation pack will follow shortly afterward that's intended for lower-cost models and using lithium-iron-phosphate battery (LFP) chemistry as well as an innovative bipolar internal design. While a conventional monopolar battery uses separate cathode and anode elements, bipolar combines cathode and anode on a specially designed current collector, making it more space-efficient and allowing greater energy density. Toyota says this first bipolar pack will be 40 percent cheaper than the bX4X's battery and have around a 30-minute fast-charge speed, providing about 315 miles of range in its biggest configuration.

A high-performance bipolar pack will follow in 2027, switching back to lithium-ion chemistry and a high nickel cathode, with this being the one that Toyota says will ultimately deliver on its claim of a 520-mile driving range. It will also be 10 percent cheaper than the performance battery and will have a 20-minute 10-to-80-percent recharge time under the best possible conditions.

The Eagerly Awaited Solid-State Battery (in 2027)

Beyond that, Toyota confirms plans to introduce solid-state batteries as soon as 2027, although we note that the date has already slipped from the 2025 that was being quoted last year. Solid-state batteries use solid rather than liquid electrolytes, allowing for a greater tolerance of high voltages and temperatures and improving energy density and reducing weight. The challenges are complexity, cost, and the difficulty in delivering long-term durability. Toyota says its first-gen solid-state packs are targeting about 520 miles of range, with a 10-minute 10-to-80 charge capability, but also says that subsequent evolution will likely move peak range up to 630 miles. That figure that would surely be enough to persuade even the most determined EV doubter that long journeys can be accomplished electrically.

Should Toyota deliver on all these claims—and it is not a brand given to overpromising—then it will be going from the back of the pack on electrification right to the cutting edge. We certainly can’t fault the company for any lack of ambition, with the stated aim to be producing 3.5 million EVs annually across 30 different Toyota and Lexus model lines by 2030.
Onyx Dragon
1999 Jeep Cherokee Sport, 2021 Jeep Wrangler Islander, 2001 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am
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