Toyota announced today a limited launch of the “C+pod” ultra-compact battery electric vehicle (BEV), from December 25, to corporate users, local governments and other organizations that have been exploring new options to drive the popularization of BEVs. Toyota plans to further promote the establishment of systems for popularizing BEVs, including the development of new business models, and to conduct a full-scale launch including to individual customers by 2022. Today’s launch will also demonstrate new services that can only be provided by BEVs.
The new Toyota C+Pod is an environmentally-friendly two-seater BEV designed as a mobility option that improves per-person energy efficiency. In addition to short-distance daily use, the C+pod is also aimed at corporate users visiting customers on a regular basis, and at users in urban or mountainous communities needing safe, unrestricted, and environmentally-friendly transportation options.
To drive further popularization of BEVs, Toyota is expanding its product lineup and forming open collaborations as it works to build new business models. In Japan, it is focusing initially on the C+pod, Walking Area BEVs*1, and Toyota i-Road*2, with more than 200 corporate and local government partners*3 currently involved in exploring new transportation models.
As one of these collaborative efforts, today’s launch of the C+pod will also demonstrate new services specific to BEVs. One of those services is Toyota Green Charge, a joint project developed with Chubu Electric Power Miraiz Co., Inc. to offer a single point of contact for corporations seeking support when constructing optimal charging facilities or developing electricity plans for BEVs, such as CO2-free power. The service will be jointly implemented in collaboration with Chubu Electric Power Miraiz, Kansai Electric Power Co., Inc., and TEPCO Energy Partner, Inc. Other services in planning include the Electric-vehicle sharing service that combines tourist information with the “Toyota Share*4” car-sharing service to promote sightseeing and excursions.
With a compact body measuring 2,490 x 1,290 x 1,550 mm (length x width x height), and a minimum turning radius of 3.9 m, the C+pod comfortably navigates sharp corners on narrow roads, minimizes steering wheel operation when parking, and provides excellent manoeuvrability in everyday driving. The under-floor location of the lithium-ion battery in front of the seat creates a flat, low-floor package that minimizes steps.
The motor is positioned in the rear of the vehicle, while the combination of a rigid, lightweight body and independent suspension system, that absorbs irregularities in the road surface, achieves high-quality riding comfort and brisk yet stable driving performance. The C+pod comes with a cruising range of up to 150 km (WLTC mode, Class 1 test cycle*1 when running on battery power; Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism), which provides peace of mind for daily use.
The Toyota C+Pod supports standard charging, which makes charging easy whether at home or outside of the home. The supplied charging cable (100/200 VAC) connects directly to power outlets for charging. With a membership of the BEV/PHEV recharging service*2, the vehicle can be charged outside of the home at Toyota dealers with G-Station chargers (approximately 4,200 charging stations*3) and at any standard charging spot across Japan (approximately 10,800 charging stations*4).
The C+pod includes an external power supply system of up to 1,500 W (100 VAC) as standard for use during power outages and natural disasters. In addition to use through the accessory power outlet near the passenger’s feet, the optional vehicle power connector can be plugged into the standard charging inlet at the front of the vehicle for use as an external power supply socket, which can supply power for up to about 10 hours*5.
The Toyota C+Pod comes with a fully blacked-out cabin, incorporating LED headlights and LED rear combination taillights to create a distinctive picture of concentrated features and unique BEV design. With the charging inlet/power supply outlet located between the headlights, easy daily use was a particular focus.
Exterior panels are made of plastic to help reduce weight. Paired with the black of the cabin, five different two-tone body color*6 schemes are available, including with a vivid Cyan Metallic and an active, deep Orange Metallic. There are also three different three-tone color*6 options available that combine blacked-out body with the black cabin.
With an interior cabin width of 1,100 mm, the interior provides a simple space for two adults to sit side-by-side. Positioned above a white center tray, the instrument panel features meters and other functional equipment. The contrast with the black tones of the interior creates a feeling of size that exceeds its actual dimensions. Switches are also consolidated in the center panel to achieve people-friendly operability.
Equipped with new safety features for ultra-compact mobility, in compliance with standards of a mini vehicle. Uses a structure that efficiently disperses and absorbs impact energy across multiple components, and ensures safety in the event of frontal, side or rear impacts. Mitigates any impact on pedestrians in a collision with a vehicle body structure that reduces pedestrian injury.
A Pre-collision Safety System is included as standard to detect other vehicles (day and night), pedestrians (day and night), and cyclists (day). An Intelligent Clearance Sonar with Parking Support Brakes (Stationary Objects) is also included to help avoid collisions, or mitigate damage, with walls and other obstacles during low-speed operation. Altogether, the vehicle has a full range of equipment to support safe driving every day.