Old? Don't Go Far? Toyota Has Your Ride

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
old don t go far toyota has your ride

If that compact sedan or crossover has become too much to handle, and you live in Japan, Toyota has just the thing for you. Due out in 2020, Toyota’s aptly-named Ultra-compact BEV is a, um, ultra-compact battery electric vehicle that’s clean, green, and in no way mean.

To butcher a tagline from Dodge… if you can handle a top speed of 60 km/h (37.3 mph), you could be Toyota material.

The automaker’s new home-market offering dispenses with needless frills like a backseat or size, preferring instead to make the smallest impact on the environment and traffic congestion as possible. Its reveal comes in advance of a public debut at the Tokyo Motor Show.

“We want to create a mobility solution that can support Japan’s ageing society and provide freedom of movement to people at all stages of life,” said the model’s development head, Akihiro Yanaka. “With the Ultra-compact BEV, we are proud to offer customers a vehicle that not only allows for greater autonomy, but also requires less space, creates less noise and limits environmental impact.”

Offering just enough car and capability to perform a number of mundane tasks, Toyota sees the tiny two-seater’s buyers as a combination of elderly residents (which Japan has in spades), newly-licensed drivers, and business types who make a lot of local trips. You probably won’t be driving out of the city in this thing. Besides its limited top speed, the Ultra-compact BEV offers a range of just 100 km (62 miles), which, to its credit, is a greater distance offered by Smart’s Fortwo Electric Drive EQ Whatever. You can be sure that parking and maneuvering in tight spaces will be a breeze ⁠—assuming your eyesight is up to the task.

Toyota’s tiny EV is just one of the electric mobility solutions the automaker has planned for the country, with others coming in even smaller. Batteries will be reused, the company claims, and business and government partners are already being wooed to take on a fleet of said vehicles. Pricing and power specs remain a mystery ⁠— not that you’ll need to know.

[Images: Toyota]

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3 of 18 comments
  • APaGttH APaGttH on Oct 17, 2019

    Top speed of 37 MPH? Perfect replacement for the left lane Prius.

  • Lorenzo Lorenzo on Oct 17, 2019

    I'm old, and I don't go far that often, but I'm not getting in that thing. I'll keep driving my 2005 LeSabre with 86k instead. I enjoy intimidating secretaries in their Corollas.

    • Charliej Charliej on Oct 17, 2019

      Some secretaries carry guns and get upset when intimidated by people in big cars. It could be dangerous being you.

  • Kat Laneaux Wonder if they will be able to be hacked into (the license plates) and then you get pulled over for invalid license plates or better yet, someone steal your car and transpose numbers to show that they are the owners. Just a food for thought.
  • Tassos Government cheese for millionaires, while idiot Joe biden adds trillions to the debt.What a country (IT ONCE WAS!)
  • Tassos screw the fat cat incompetents. Let them rot. No deal.
  • MaintenanceCosts I think if there's one thing we can be sure of given Toyota's recent decisions it's that the strongest version of the next Camry will be a hybrid. Sadly, the buttery V6 is toast.A Camry with the Highlander/Sienna PSD powertrain would be basically competitive in the sedan market, with the slow death of V6 and big-turbo options. But for whatever reason it seems like that powertrain is capacity challenged. Not sure why, as there's nothing exotic in it.A Camry with the Hybrid Max powertrain would be bonkers, easily the fastest thing in segment. It would likewise be easy to build; again, there's nothing exotic in the Hybrid Max powertrain. (And Hybrid Max products don't seem to be all that constrained, so far.)
  • Analoggrotto The readers of TTAC deserve better than a bunch of Kia shills posing as journalists.