Toyota wants to significantly up its game in the electric vehicle segment. One of the world’s largest automakers has a new CEO, Koji Sato, who wants to speed up the process of going green with battery technology. As part of Sato’s plan, Toyota could start producing electric vehicles in the United States around the middle of the decade.

A new report from Japan’s Nikkei business daily indicates Toyota will begin building EVs at its Kentucky plant as early as the summer of 2025. The plan is for the factory to be thoroughly updated to produce electric and combustion models together. If everything goes to plan, the manufacturer wants to assemble around 10,000 electric vehicles at the plant every month. 

Toyota is also slated to open a battery plant in North Carolina by around the same time the Kentucky site will become operational. It will allow the Japanese company to produce EVs entirely in the United States, from the core powertrain components to the final assembly.

From 2026, Toyota wants to build about 200,000 electric vehicles in America annually, representing roughly 20 percent of the firm’s output in the country. By that time, with Toyota EVs also on the assembly lines in Japan, China, and India, the automaker wants to deliver around 1 million zero-emissions vehicles globally per year.

Toyota is currently the largest automaker in the world by the number of produced and sold cars annually. However, it is lagging behind the competition in the EV market having assembled and delivered just around 24,000 battery-powered Toyota and Lexus vehicles in 2022. For comparison, Tesla sold around 1.31 million EVs last year. By the end of this decade, Toyota aims to sell no less than 3.5 million electric cars annually.

In August last year, Toyota announced a major 730 billion yen (around $5.6 billion) investment in battery production in battery production. Around half of that figure will go into Toyota Battery Manufacturing in North Carolina. Thanks to this new investment, the brand's combined battery production capacity in Japan and the United States is expected to be increased by up to 40 GWh. Batteries produced in North Caroline won't be used only at the Kentucky plant but will also be exported to all markets where Toyota sells electric vehicles.

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