Koji Sato, the new president and CEO of Toyota Motor, made his first public speech in a live-streamed news conference on Friday afternoon, according to Nikkei Asia. On this occasion, Vice-President Hiroki Nakajima said the company will release 10 new EV models by 2026, which would amount to about 1.5 million vehicles in sales annually.
The president and CEO of Toyota Motor during his speech pledged to pursue electrification “practically,” matching the carmaker’s product offerings to the demands of particular regions. The world’s top automaker has been performing unimpressively in the fast-evolving industry, most notably lagging in sales of electric vehicles.
Nikkei Asia reported that as young rivals like Tesla of the US and BYD of China threaten to conquer the rapidly expanding market, Toyota’s reshuffled management faces the urgent task of ramping up development in the field.
Toyota will also create a specialised unit to develop next-generation EVs, led by one person with “full authority” and in charge of everything from development and production to business, according to Vice President Hiroki Nakajima. The leader of the unit has already been decided and more details will likely be announced in May, he said.
Toyota sold 21,650 battery-powered vehicles in 2022, taking just a 0.3 per cent share of the market, according to data by S and P Global Mobility. Nikkei Asia said it is far behind top-seller Tesla’s 1.27 million units and runner-up BYD’s 810,600.
Although it aims to sell 3.5 million by 2030, the past year has been plagued by the recall of its first mass-produced battery-powered model, the bz4X.