Toyota launches new ‘Team Japan’ initiative to keep the ICE alive with e fuels

Toyota, Subaru, Mazda, Kawasaki and Yamaha

10w ago
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Toyota has formed a new alliance with four other Japanese brands to develop synthetic fuels to keep the ICE alive. The company’s CEO Akio Toyoda has been very vocal about BEVs in recent years, believing that while it may be a good short-term solution, it won’t be as effective in the long run, not to mention the fact that batteries are expensive and complicated to make.

Just a few days ago, Toyota refused to sign the agreement to phase out fossil-fuel vehicles by 2040 and it has now launched this new initiative, dubbed ‘Team Japan’, with Subaru, Mazda, Kawasaki and Yamaha. Together, these five brands will not only work on alternative solutions such as fuel, but also on things like hydrogen.

Toyota and Subaru are already working on a new type of carbon-neutral fuel for racing, and in the meantime Toyota and Mazda are jointly developing a new 1.5-litre Skyactiv-D engine powered by biodiesel. As for Yamaha and Kawasaki, they will be working on a hydrogen engine for motorcycles.

The largest Japanese automaker and manufacturer of the best-selling car of the last twenty years (the Corolla, ed.) has been working with hybrid technology for a very long time, and they’ve also launched a new BEV - the bz4x crossover - because that’s what the market requires but the company has never believed in battery-powered electric vehicles as viable and definitive solution to reduce emissions, more like a stopgap measure.

I’ve had a look on Twitter, Reddit and other forums and, as expected, ‘Team Japan’ has already divided opinions. Some praise Toyota, some think this is stupid. Time will tell.

What do you think? Is this the right choice, or should they do what everyone else is doing and put all their eggs in the BEV basket? Let me know in the comments below.

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Comments (85)

  • This is great

      2 months ago
    • I agree. What is the end goal here? Reducing emissions or ending the ICE? ‘Cause I thought it was the former but it feels like everyone is focusing on the latter

        2 months ago
    • Exactly it’s reducing emissions why eliminate the ICE when batteries for the EV’s are causing more pollution then the ICE’s them selves?

        2 months ago
  • Toyota good. ICE good. People that only want to get rid of the ICE because they are blindly lead by media into believing it will solve all of the worlds problems, bad.

      2 months ago
  • Toyota is an extremely smart company and very much worth listening to. Also there is a strong sense of Utopianism and messianism among many EV proponents. This is very dangerous and ultimately totalitarian. I have no issue with EVs but I am fundamentally opposed to the utopian and messianic life force that is integral to the political and media agenda on this topic. Let’s develop e-fuels and continue to refine gas engines. We need all choices. Ultimately the goal of the so called green movement is power and control.

      2 months ago
    • Once the work out how to regenerate hydrocarbon fuel during braking, and increase trhe efficiency past 50%, give me a call.

        2 months ago
    • You're only looking at one part of the equation. Find out a way to make an EV have an energy density that's not 7 times worse than an ICE and tell me. Because when you factor that into the equation ICE looks one hell of a lot more appealing on an...

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        2 months ago
  • Wonderful! Anything to keep appliances from being forced upon us all.

      2 months ago
    • Keep a eye on the manufacturers linked with engine supply from BMW as they are working with Toyota on this. Also VW didn't agree on the COP26 car manufacturer agreement probably because they already had their fingers burnt with the last...

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        2 months ago
  • YES! SO MUCH YES! THIS is what we should be doing. Toyota gets it. Why put all of our existing internal combustion engines and infrastructure out to pasture when it would be so much cheaper and more environmentally friendly to replace the gas with a synthetic carbon-neutral alternative? In an ideal world, we should be able to choose whether we want EVs or ICEs according to personal preference, not because we’re forced to choose one. Their are many objective and subjective advantages and disadvantages to both platforms, and I’d love it if the two could coexist. But one forcibly replacing the other entirely would be tragic, and a huge problem for anyone not rich enough to afford an EV and whoever has to scrap the millions upon millions of ICEs.

      2 months ago
    • errr. perhaps because ICE engines cannot get past 50% efficiency, and EV's are already over 70%

        2 months ago
    • This is irrelevant when synthetic fuels are carbon neutral. The reality is that EVs are still too expensive for the general public to adopt, and the creation of new EVs is bad for the environment. If there’s anything we can do to make existing...

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        2 months ago
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