Suzuki Motor looks to partner Toyota to learn how to make small EVs


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GREATER NOIDA — Japan’s Suzuki Motor Corp (SMC) plans to learn from partner Toyota Motor Corp about applying EV technology to build small electric cars, its president Toshihiro Suzuki told reporters during India’s biennial car show on Wednesday.

Suzuki said it is learning EV and other technologies from Toyota with a goal to use that to develop cars that are more in line with its own products.

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“So how to introduce this EV technology on small cars is something we need to work upon and share with Toyota,” he said, speaking on the sidelines of the car show.

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When asked if the company would look at launching EVs built on gasoline engine platforms, Suzuki said the company needs to develop a grounds-up EV.

Electrification is seen as a challenge for Suzuki’s Indian unit Maruti that wants New Delhi to incentivise all cleaner technologies, including hybrid and ethanol, and not just EVs, which it expects to launch only in 2025.

“When it comes to India, EV cannot be the only solution. Other car manufacturers in India have launched EVs ahead of Maruti. But the solution cannot be one,” said Suzuki, adding that alternate fuels like ethanol and technologies like hybrid are also suited to the Indian market and customer needs.

Suzuki has said it will spend more than 104 billion rupees ($1.3 billion) on its electrification push in India, including in a battery plant for EVs that will start in 2026, making it one of its biggest battery and electric vehicle investments globally.

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The company already has a joint venture with Japan’s Denso Corp and Toshiba Corp to build lithium-ion batteries for hybrid cars for use in India and exports.

It showcased an electric concept SUV- the all-wheel drive eVX SUV – which it plans to bring to the market in 2025.

India is pushing car makers to build more electric cars by offering companies billions of dollars in incentives. Yet, electric cars make up less 1% of total car sales in India but the government wants to grow this to 30% by 2030. ($1 = 81.6020 Indian rupees) (Reporting by Aditi Shah; Writing by Nandan Mandayam; Editing by Jacqueline Wong and Muralikumar Anantharaman)


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