While almost every other car manufacturer has been presenting a new electric car every week for quite some time, Toyota has been rather quiet. Some people were even worried about the Japanese car manufacturer. But now the brand seems to rise like a phoenix from the ashes. In line with the EU Parliament’s announcement that from 2035 onwards no registrations for combustion engines will be allowed, Toyota is launching a brand new electric car. In the process, Toyota is also bringing along a new sub-brand called bZ (beyond Zero). To go with the new name, the bZ4X e-SUV also comes with a vehicle to match.
A brand-new concept in the bZ4X
Some may be surprised that Toyota has not yet become more active in the field of electric mobility. After all, the group from Japan once made the hybrid car market accessible to the masses with the Toyota Prius. This undoubtedly makes the company one of the most important pioneers of pure electromobility. With its luxury car subsidiary Lexus, Toyota also presented the Lexus RZ 450e e-SUV back in April. This is scheduled for delivery starting in January 2023. Similar to VW’s ID series, they now want to usher in a new era at the automaker with beyond Zero. Finally, the dress rehearsal in the form of the bZ4X relies on no conversion of a well-known Toyota from combustion engine to electric motor. The e-SUV was designed as a pure electric car. And that’s something you’re supposed to notice.
The brand-new platform, which is to be used in the bZ4X, we should then be able to find in other models of the new sub-brand. Toyota calls its new creation e-TNGA. The basic idea is to use the chassis to house the battery. It should be possible to stow the entire vehicle battery in the floor of the vehicle, which should have many advantages. In particular, this should have a positive effect on the driving characteristics of the car. Finally, Toyota can ensure an even distribution on both axles. The e-TNGA platform also has the advantage that it should be able to be used on models of different sizes.
E-SUV comes in different versions
Meanwhile, it is common practice in the electric car sector to rely on different drive versions. The model with front-wheel drive is to bring 204 hp or 150 kW as well as 265 Nm. This is also the case with the bZ4X. The all-wheel drive version comes with 218 hp or 160 kW and 336 Nm. Toyota is already advertising the latter with a high off-road performance, which is supposed to be provided by the so-called X-MODE. The battery size seems to be independent of the drive type. At least, the press release from Toyota only talks about 71.4 kWh, which should be able to take the bZ4X 513 km far. This is at least true for the front-wheel drive version.
The more powerful all-wheeler is again said to pack 415 km of range. Thanks to a special water cooling system, the battery cells are said to be very durable. Accordingly, Toyota wants to give its customers a ten-year warranty on the battery. The total capacity of the battery should not fall below 70 percent even after this time. Once the battery is empty, it should be possible to recharge it from zero to 80 percent within half an hour. The fast-charging function with up to 150 kW is supposed to make it possible.
Plans for the future
Toyota apparently has plans for its bZ4X in the future. For example, a slightly updated version is expected to launch later this year, which should be able to offer a more powerful onboard charger. Instead of the now standard 6.6 kW, this should be able to offer a whopping 11 kW. Toyota also plans to offer a customized solar roof for the bZ4X soon. This will turn the e-car into a mobile photovoltaic system. The car will then be able to transmit the collected energy directly to the drive battery via a control unit. You can configure the Toyota bZ4X now on the official website. The MSRP starts at 47,490.00 euros.