Toyota to share hybrid technology secrets

Toyota is to give other manufacturers access to its patents for hybrid electric vehicle technology. In an attempt to bring down the overall impact of emissions and promote the uptake of electrified vehicles, the Japanese firm is letting rivals look at almost 24,000 patents awarded over the past 20 years that relate to electric motors and power control units.

Access and royalty-free licences will be granted until 2030 to 23,740 patents – 5,680 of which were already available in relation to fuel-cell electric vehicles. Toyota will also be providing other brands with technical support for developing and selling electrified vehicles that use Toyota-sourced components – although this will be fee-based.

Shigeki Tareshi, Toyota Motor Corporation executive vice-president, said: “Based on the high volume of inquiries we receive about our vehicle electrification systems from companies that recognise a need to popularise hybrid and other electrified vehicle technologies, we believe that now is the time for co-operation.

“If the number of electrified vehicles accelerates significantly in the next 10 years, they will become standard. We hope to play a role in supporting that process.”

Since making the world’s first mass-produced hybrid car – the Prius – in 1997, Toyota has continued to be a leader in petrol-electric powertrains.

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