Published on April 29th, 2024 | by Subhash Nair


Electric Toyota Hilux Revo Pilot Programme Begins In Pattaya, Thailand

Toyota is trying out a pilot programme in Thailand with their electric Toyota Hilux Revo prototype.

In a major move for sustainable transportation in Southeast Asia, Toyota Motor Thailand has initiated a public transit pilot program featuring fully electric Hilux Revo pickup trucks. On Thursday, nine modified electric Hilux Revos hit the streets of Pattaya as “song-taews” – the popular pickup truck taxis used for public transportation in Thailand.

Toyota Hilux Revo electric programme in Pattaya Thailand

The Electric Hilux Revo Pilot in Pattaya

A motorcade of the battery electric Hilux Revo pickup trucks paraded through the seaside resort city of Pattaya, located about 100 km east of Bangkok. These electric trucks have been re-purposed for fixed bus route service in the tourist hotspot.

“The battery EV Revo have been modified into song-taews for public transportation,” said Toyota Thailand Executive Vice President Surapoom Udomwong at the launch event.

Toyota plans to deliver a total fleet of one dozen electric Hilux Revos to Pattaya for the pilot. The city’s mayor, Poramet Ngampichet, hopes to eventually convert all 700 song-taew vehicles in Pattaya to EVs to reduce emissions in the major tourist destination.

“This is a memorable day,” Ngampichet stated. “Pattaya is a major tourist city for Thailand and so lowering pollution is important.”

Toyota’s Electric Vehicle Strategy in Thailand

The electric Hilux Revo pilot represents a strategic move by Toyota, the market leader in Thailand’s automotive sector. Japanese automakers like Toyota, Honda, and Isuzu have long dominated vehicle sales in the Southeast Asian nation. However, Chinese EV manufacturers are rapidly gaining ground thanks to EV subsidies and tax incentives from the Thai government.

Over US$1.44 billion has been committed by Chinese companies like BYD, Changan, and Great Wall Motors to establish EV production in Thailand’s vital auto export industry. Chery Automobile was just approved to become the eighth Chinese EV brand to invest in Thai manufacturing facilities.

While Toyota controls around one-third of Thailand’s vehicle market currently, the company is embracing electrification to maintain its stronghold. Toyota previously announced plans to mass produce an electric version of its popular Hilux pickup by 2025, though manufacturing details are still forthcoming.

Pickup trucks are immensely popular in Thailand, representing approximately half of all vehicle sales. In addition to Toyota, Isuzu is setting up a plant to build the electric D-Max pickup for domestic sales and export.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

About the Author

Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

Comments are closed.

Back to Top ↑