Toyota Motor Corporation announced on Friday its plans to launch ten new battery electric vehicle (EV) models by 2026, marking a significant ramp-up in its electric vehicle efforts. The move comes as investors have long criticized the Japanese automaker for being slow in developing a battery-powered vehicle line-up, instead of focusing on hybrids such as its pioneering Prius.
As a response to the criticism, Toyota will establish a new, specialized unit that will focus on next-generation battery EVs. The company also aims to achieve annual production of 1.5 million battery-powered cars by 2026. Toyota’s new Chief Executive, Koji Sato, said that the company would take a “practical approach” to popularise electrified cars that included hybrids, which would remain an essential pillar of its business.