Toyota is not stopping at manufacturing, selling cars and SUVs. They are now investing in technologies that will change society and define the future.
Speaking at Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2019, Bob Carter, Executive Vice President – Sales at Toyota Motor North America, said that the company is transitioning from an automobile company to a mobility company, providing mobility for all.
Explaining this, he said, “Well, it’s about the freedom to move, whether it’s across the country, across town, or across the room. It’s about 'being of service,' with universal, inclusive, and accessible mobility solutions providing the greatest number of options to the greatest number of people. Because when you’re free to move, anything is possible.”
The CES 2018 saw Toyota showcase e-Palette and Autono-Maas, their concepts for Mobility as a Service (MaaS), which demonstrate the “Mobility for All” philosophy – connected, autonomous vehicles, shared mobility on demand, all powered by electrification. This year at CES, the automaker has continued with its focus on the same.
Toyota kickstarted the vehicle electrification phase with Prius Hybrid and fuel cell electric sedan, Mirai. With 13 million electrified vehicles sold globally, Toyota and Lexus cars form over 60 percent of all electrified vehicles in the US.
With 95 percent vehicles powered today by fossil fuels, Toyota has plans to change the pie mix. Bob Carter said that Toyota’s 2020 goal is to have more than 15 percent of U.S. sales as electrified vehicles and an electrified option for almost every new Toyota and Lexus model by 2025.
The 2030 goal is to sell approximately 5.5 million electrified vehicles per year, including one million zero-emission vehicles.
The Toyota 2050 Environmental Challenge is Toyota’s commitment to have a near net positive impact on the environment by 2050. The challenge includes six major goals, including the complete elimination of greenhouse gas emissions from our operations, and a 90 percent reduction from vehicles by 2050.
There is an ongoing effort to make it happen, including battery technology and advanced fuel cell electric power systems.
An ongoing collaboration between Toyota and PACCAR, the parent company of Kenworth, has seen the development of fully-capable, zero-emission electric Class 8 trucks powered by two Mirai fuel cell stacks.
The proof-of-concept truck has logged nearly 10,000 miles hauling freight from the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach to rail yards and warehouses across the L.A. Basin. The collaboration is now putting 10 new trucks on the road across the Los Angeles area, all with zero emissions.
Along with making better and greener automobiles, Toyota is pioneering research in artificial intelligence, advanced materials, human support devices, and physical rehabilitation to develop robots to assist the elderly, physically disabled, and injured. Toyota is also investing in connected networks to bring together mobility services and the people who need them.
The Toyota Mobility Foundation launched the 'Mobility Unlimited Challenge' last year which aims to provide four million dollars in grants to jump-start the development of smart, assistive technologies that can help those with impairments to freely move.
In closing his presentation, Bob Carter said that the journey to be a mobility company is no small task, “But Toyota’s history is all about taking on challenges that no one believed could be solved and making the impossible, possible. So let’s face those challenges together and create a future where 'Mobility for All' is not only possible, it’s a reality.”