In recent times we are seeing how almost all the new launches of the large groups within the electric car sector are large SUVs and expensive sedans. There is hardly any room for urbanites. But Toyota wants to hit the table with the launch of the bZ1. A compact that wants to be placed on the low-cost side and of which we anticipate how its design line will be.
This year Toyota will launch the bZ4X in our market, which will become the first large-scale production electric car of the Japanese brand and a before and after for the automotive sector. An SUV that will be placed by size in the segment of the Hyundai IONIQ 5, the Nissan Ariya, the Tesla Model Y, and the Volkswagen ID.4.
However, Toyota intends to offer affordable electric vehicles for the bulk of the population, which is why in the short term it will launch a series of models smaller than the bZ4X. These proposals will offer less autonomy than its older brother; in return, they will have a more attractive starting price.
And it is that the goal of reaching 3.5 million electric cars by 2030 will not be achieved only with high-priced models, but will require the contribution of small urban cars such as the next BZ1.
During the presentation of Toyota’s new strategy last year, it showed us how its future electric range will be made up of sedans, SUVs, sports cars, SUVs, pick-ups, vans… Toyota wants to launch vehicles for all tastes and needs. Some of the models presented still have a show car look, while others are shown closer to their production version. One of the best examples of the latter case is the Toyota bZ1, a small SUV similar in design to the new Aygo X Cross.
Defined as “an electric vehicle with a small battery and a comfortable interior designed for Europe and Japan”, this model will fall within the “Beyond Zero” range, which leads us to believe that it will not use the Aygo’s TNGA-B platform X Cross, but the e-TNGA, a specific architecture for electric cars already seen in the bZ4X.
Toyota has confirmed that its goal is to get this affordable urban SUV to consume just 12.5 kWh per 100 km, the lowest in its class. This will allow it to offer good autonomy despite the use of cheap, low-capacity batteries.
This leads us to believe that the bZ1 will possibly have a motor of about 80 kW (109 hp) that will be powered by a battery of between 30 and 40 kWh. Enough if we look at the approved consumption data given by the manufacturer of between 250 and 320 km WLTP, or about 200-250 real km of autonomy.
Thanks to its configuration and the commitment to chemistry that we might think will be the LFP, they are yet to confirm, this would result in a car priced below 20,000 euros before any incentives or discounts. A price that we can compare with 17,000 euros in which the Toyota Aygo X starts in Spain, and that would place the electric version very close to gasoline, all in an electric model that should reach the market before 2025.