Toyota will begin European trials of an all-electric version of its iQ city car in 2011.
The firm will put the iQ EV, previewed by last year’s FT-EV II concept, on sale in the USA from 2012, but the firm is also looking at selling it in other markets including Europe.
The iQ EV announcement comes as part of a Toyota progress report on its development of alternatively fuelled low carbon vehicles.
Working with Tesla, Toyota showed an all-electric RAV4 that uses the US electric car specialist’s running gear; the car will go on sale in the US in 2012.
Toyota will launch 11 hybrids by the end of 2012 including both “all-new and re-designed models”. Already confirmed for launch is a hybrid version of the Yaris and a Prius-based MPV. The Prius plug-in will be launched in early 2012.
The firm has also said next-generation batteries beyond the pack that will be used in the Prius plug-in are in development that will “bring big advances in performance that will be needed for electric cars to succeed in the mass market”. These include solid-slate and metal-air batteries.
In its statement, Toyota added that it believes “eco cars can only have a positive impact on the environment of they are widely used”.
Despite its development of alternatively fuelled vehicles, Toyota has said it remains committed to “improving the efficiency of its internal combustion engines, which account for the majority of sales, while raising performance, reducing costs and expanding the range available”.