At an executive press meeting on the eve of the Geneva Motor Show, Switzerland, Toyota Motor Europe (TME) revealed that it will phase out all diesel engines from its range of European passenger cars in 2018. The company stated it will, however, continue to offer diesel engines in its Hilux, Proace and Land Cruiser models to meet customer demand.
In 2017, Toyota stated that hybrid electric vehicle (HEV)’s represented 41% of TME’s total sales, an increase of 38% year-on-year to 406,000 units. In contrast, Toyota’s diesel mix on passenger cars was reported to be less than 10% in the same year.
Johan van Zyl, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe, commented, “Toyota has been pioneering Hybrid Electric Vehicle technology for more than twenty years. For several years, HEV versions have been the dominant powertrain where offered. In our latest new model, the Toyota C-HR, HEVs accounted for 78% of sales last year.”
During the presentation, Toyota shared the next step of its European powertrain strategy, introducing the new Auris model, to be built at Toyota Manufacturing UK’s Burnaston factory from next year. This range will be offered with a choice of three powertrains, including a 1.2 litre petrol engine and two HEV systems.
“As part of our electrified vehicle strategy, we are progressively expanding our HEV offering with a second, more powerful 2.0l engine,” continued van Zyl. “Starting with the new generation Auris, this expanded HEV line-up is a natural reaction to our passenger car customers’ demands.”
In February 2018, Toyota Motor Group reported sales of 1.52 million vehicles with electrified drivetrains globally in 2017, an increase of 8% over the previous year’s electric vehicle (EV) sales, putting the company three years ahead of the target it set in October 2015 to sell 1.5 million EVs in the year 2020.