Published on March 29th, 2024 | by Subhash Nair


Toyota Takes Full Control Of Its Battery JV With Panasonic

The joint venture will soon be known as Toyota Battery Co., Ltd.

Toyota may have been quick to the hybrid game, but they’re struggling to keep up with American, European and Chinese rivals in the growing but shaky battery electric vehicle game. This is partly because of Toyota’s reluctance to make a full commitment to battery electric vehicles, instead choosing to hedge their bets on a multi-pathway strategy towards carbon neutrality.

toyota battery with panasonic technology

With solid state battery technology on the horizon, Toyota has decided it’s time to buy over and rename one of the subsidiaries it uses to make hybrid batteries to Toyota Battery Co., Ltd. This company has been known as Primearth EV Energy Co., Ltd since 1996 when it was set up as a joint venture with Panasonic. Toyota bought over most of Panasonic’s shares back in 2009/2010 but is only now taking over the remaining 19.5% and tidying things up in terms of the subsidiary’s identity within the corporate structure. Perhaps this will help establish a stronger link between solid state battery technology with the Toyota name.

Toyota Battery will be expanding its role to supply batteries not just for use in hybrid electric vehicles but for Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles and Battery Electric Vehicles as well. It currently only produces hybrid electric vehicle batteries in both nickel-metal hydride (Ni-MH) and lithium-ion (Li-ion) form. In Japan, the subsidiary makes 1.4 million Ni-MH battery packs a year and 200,000 Li-ion battery packs a year.

Toyota Battery will remain in Kosei City, Shizuoka Prefecture the birthplace of Sakichi Toyoda, the company’s founder.

In unrelated news, Toyota and Panasonic have another unrelated joint venture known as Prime Planet Energy & Solutions (PPES). PPES is involved in the production of automotive prismatic batteries using Li-ion chemistry. It was also set up to manufacture solid-state batteries for use in the automotive industry and explore other future battery technology possibilities. This was set up back in 2020 and there seems to be no sign of a change in ownership structure yet. PPES has offices in Tokyo and Kansai with operations in China as well and over 5,000 employees spread out between both countries at the time of its founding.

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