Toyota GM: "Hybrids Not the Solution to the Future"
Buried in an AdAge.com interview with Toyota GM Bob Carter: a quote that brings to mind the bon mots of GM Car Czar Bob Lutz. After Mr. Carter lauds Toyota's hybrid domination– an 80 percent U.S. market share with a supply-restricted 67 percent growth rate— the Maximum Moment™ arrives. Carter declares that "it's not our position that the hybrid is [the] solution to the future. We're looking at high-efficiency gasoline, clean diesel, fuel cells and the plug-in hybrid." While it's an ostensibly sensible position, Carter's remark must come (or will come) as something of an eye opener to ToMoCo's Veep for Drivetrain Development. Back in May, Masatami Takimoto told the Motor Authority that hybrids will be the Japanese automaker's standard drivetrain by 2020, 'cause synergy driven vehicles would be "no more expensive to produce than a conventional vehicle." So, does Carter's cautious climb down make him "Minimum Bob?"