BYD, Toyota to establish joint company for battery electric vehicle R&D
BYD and Toyota Motor Corp. have signed an agreement to establish a joint company to conduct research and development for battery electric vehicles (BEVs). The new R&D company, which will involve design and development of BEVs (including platform) and related parts, is slated to be established in China in 2020. BYD and Toyota will evenly share 50% of the total capital needed. BYD and Toyota plan to staff the new company by transferring engineers and the jobs currently involved in related R&D from their respective companies.
On the establishment of the new company, BYD Senior Vice President Lian Yu-bo said, "We aim to combine BYD's strengths in development and competitiveness in the battery electric vehicle market with Toyota's quality and safety technology to provide the best BEV products for the market demand and consumer affection as early as we can."
Toyota Executive Vice President Shigeki Terashi commented, "With the same goal to further promote the widespread use of electrified vehicles, we appreciate that BYD and Toyota can become "teammates," able to put aside our rivalry and collaborate. We hope to further advance and expand both BYD and Toyota from the efforts of the new company with BYD."
David Leggett, Automotive Editor at GlobalData, offered his view of the agreement, "This collaboration is a way to save costs and position both companies to capitalize on China's rapid BEV market growth over the next ten years. GlobalData forecasts that by 2030 annual production of BEVs in China will be approaching six million vehicles per annum—a six-fold increase on the current level. China will be at the heart of future global growth for EVs.
“News of the agreement between Toyota and BYD to develop EVs for the Chinese market makes sense for both. They can share costs and utilize their respective strengths.
“China-based BYD is an electric battery technology specialist with very good knowledge of the Chinese marketplace and needs, while Toyota is a global original equipment manufacturer with proven strengths in vehicle development and can bring its systems to bear in areas such as manufacturing, quality, and safety.
"Further, China is the world's largest automotive market, and Beijing is creating the conditions for a ramp-up in 'New Energy Vehicles' such as plug-in electric hybrids and fully-EVs.”
BYD was founded in 1995 as a battery business and has grown into a total energy solution company, manufacturing not only electrified vehicles but other products such as large-size energy storage cells. Core parts for electrified vehicles such as batteries, motors, and power electronics are among the products that BYD develops in-house. In 2008, BYD became the first company in the world to sell mass production of plug-in hybrid electrified vehicles (PHEVs). Since 2015 onward, BYD's sales of BEVs and PHEVs have been ranked first in the world for four consecutive years.
Since Toyota launched the Prius, the world's first mass-produced hybrid electric vehicle (HEV), in 1997, the company has become a pioneer of electrified vehicle development with a focus on HEVs. Toyota has sold more than 14 million electrified vehicles worldwide and has accumulated extensive knowledge concerning the development, production, and sale of both HEVs and their related core components.
Toyota is initiating electrification globally. In China, Toyota is also working on spreading electrification and developing vehicles that meet Chinese customer's needs in collaboration between Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing (China) Co., Ltd. and the R&D centers established at Chinese joint-venture companies with China FAW Group Corporation (FAW) and Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., Ltd. (GAC).