Talents from Suzuki and Three Other Japanese Auto Makers Will Contribute to Research in an Electric Vehicle Joint Venture Led by Toyota

published: 2018-01-03 11:13 | category: News

Nikkei Asian Review reported on 31 December 2017 that Japanese auto makers Suzuki Motor Corp., Subaru Corp., Daihatsu Motor Co. Ltd., and Hino Motors Ltd. will join an electric vehicle (EV) development project headed by Toyota Motor Corp. These four companies will each send five engineers to EV Common Adventure Spirit Co. (EV C.A. Spirit) – a joint venture established by Toyota, Mazda Motor Corp., and Denso Corp. in September 2017. With the additional talents, EV C.A. Spirit will have around 60 research personnel to help Japanese auto makers to stay competitive against foreign rivals in the global EV market. Nikkei’s article also stated that that the four new participants in the domestic EV project will share the burden of research and development cost in addition to sending engineers to help working on related technologies.

The agreement on the contribution of talents from Suzuki, Subaru, Daihatsu and Hino was made on 30 December 2017. This deal, however, will not change the shareholding structure of EV C.A. Spirit. Toyota continues to own 90% of the joint venture, while Mazda and Denso each have a stake of 5% (see figure at the top of the article).

On 28 December 2017, China’s Ministry of Finance through its website announced that sales of “new energy vehicles,” which are mainly battery-powered EVs, will not be taxed during the three-year period from 2018 to 2020. According to related reporting by the Associated Press, Chinese companies represent less than 50% of the entire domestic auto market but have already captured almost 90% of the domestic EV market.

China’s “Double Integral Management Approach” to expand EV adoption and phase out traditional fuel vehicles will take effect on 1 April 2018. Also known as “Measures for Calculation Passenger Vehicles’ Corporate Average Fuel Consumption,” this policy establishes a calculation scheme that mandates percentage ratios of new energy vehicles to fuel vehicles for all auto makers in the domestic market. The percentage ratios are 10% for 2019 and 12% for 2020 under Article 17 of Chapter 3 of this policy, and the scheme covers every auto maker that produces or imports 30,000 vehicles or more annually starting in 2019.

Electrify America LLC, a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, stated on 18 December 2017 that it will install 2,800 EV charging stations near apartment and office buildings within 17 major US metropolitan areas by the end of June 2019. To carry out this task, Volkswagen will enlist the help EV infrastructure specialists including SemaConnect Inc., EV Connect Inc., and Greenlots Global.

(Credit of the figure at the top of the article goes to Toyota Motor Corp.)

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