This butt plug, sorry, “pear-shaped boiling flask” contains the solid-state electrolyte that Toyota claims will give us 900-mile EVsPhoto: Toyota
Toyota is still moving forward with its plan to produce solid-state batteries that it says will give future electric vehicles a range of more than 900 miles. And while production won’t exactly start tomorrow, the current plan to begin in 2027 isn’t too terribly far in the future, either. Except, as it turns out, production of those solid-state battery-powered EVs is going to be extremely limited for at least the first several years, The Drive reports.
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Toyota recently admitted as much in its internal newspaper, the Toyota Times. Production is still planned to begin in 2027, but it will be limited to “several hundred tons” per year. Starting in 2030 when “mass production” is scheduled to begin, that figure is expected to increase to “several thousand tons” annually. That may sound like a lot, and in a sense, it is, but it’s not going to translate into hundreds of thousands of EVs hitting the road right out of the gate. Instead, we’re talking “over ten thousand vehicles.”
A new electric startup such as Fisker would probably love to sell more than 10,000 vehicles in a year, but for a major automaker such as Toyota, that’s basically a rounding error in annual sales. For example, we’d be surprised if Toyota ended up selling fewer than 450,000 RAV4s this year, and that’s just one vehicle among many. Then again, that’s probably more than the number of bZ4Xs that it will sell this year, so it’s all relative.
The Drive suggests that those initial solid-state batteries may be used in a low-production Lexus flagship EV, and we’re inclined to agree. If there are only enough batteries for 10,000 or even 20,000 vehicles, Toyota might as well put them in something flashy and expensive. Still, it is a little disappointing to learn that it’s going to be a long time before you’ll be able to buy an electric Corolla or RAV4.