EVs Will Never Account For More Than 30% Of The Market, Toyota’s Chairman Predicts

Toyota Chairman Akio Toyoda did not mince words when he recently forecasted that electric vehicles (EVs) would never count for more than 30 percent of the cars on the road. And as EV sales stagnate, it’s hard not to see something prophetic about his statement.

According to a report from Yahoo Finance, Toyoda (the grandson of the company’s founder, Kiichiro Toyoda) estimates that as many as one billion people still live in areas without access to electricity, making EVs a non-viable option for many. Toyoda made his bold prediction during a business event earlier this month.

Toyoda Believes There Are Other Ways To Curb Emissions

Yahoo Finance’s report states that Toyoda cites CO2 as the “enemy” and that “customers, not regulations or politics,” should ultimately determine what type of vehicles will make up the future of the automotive industry. Toyoda believes a “multi-pathway approach” is the best way to reach carbon neutrality. While he predicts less than a third of the automotive market will consist of EVs, Toyoda foresees the rest of the industry splitting between hydrogen-powered vehicles and hybrids.

According to a report from Motor1, Toyoda also said of the automotive industry focusing too heavily on EVs that “limiting” consumer’s “choices and ability to travel by making expensive cars isn’t the answer,” and that internal combustion engines (ICEs) “will surely remain.” Given how legacy automakers in the United States, such as Ford, have slowed their EV production while increasing their ICE production, Toyoda’s words are ringing true.

Even though some automakers, such as Chinese company BYD, saw impressive sales growth worldwide, EV adoption rates in the United States (outside of California) are struggling. None of this is surprising, though, when a Consumer Reports survey found ICE vehicles to be 79 percent more reliable than EVs.

While some people have criticized Toyoda’s stance on the future of EVs as being too conservative, Motor1 notes in their report that Toyoda is being pragmatic about the realities of society’s energy infrastructure, what customers need from their cars, and current vehicle longevity.

However, most of the automotive industry does not share Toyoda’s stance on the future of EVs, with many automakers making aggressive moves to add more EVs to their lineups in the coming years. For example, Yahoo Finance’s report states that Volvo plans on having 70 all-electric vehicles in its lineup by the end of this decade. They also cite BMW’s aim to have 50 percent of their vehicle deliveries be all-electric by 2030. A report from Bloomberg alleges that as many as 44 percent of passenger cars will be EVs by 2040.

However, given how hybrid sales have been surging as EV sales struggle, Toyoda likely feels vindicated about his stance on the future of the automotive industry. 

Author: Jarret Hendrickson

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