Japanese Automakers Come Together for EV Project

Toyota, Isuzu, and Hino have started working together through their CJP Technologies Corporation in order to better their EV technology and improve EVs in Japan.
Written by Jane Lu
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Sep 29, 2021
Toyota, Isuzu, and Hino launched the Commercial Japan Partnership (CJP) Technologies Corporation in April to give them an edge in the commercial
electric vehicle
(EV) market.
According to
Reuters
, the EV coalition, led by Toyota, will also be joined by
Suzuki
and Daihatsu. This partnership will help the Japanese automakers focus on all types of EVs from smaller cars to trucks.
Here are more details about the CJP and the goals of the collaboration.

Why have Japanese automakers joined in a partnership?

Several Japanese automakers are working together on electrification
Toyota
holds a 60% stake in the joint venture and each of the other automakers will have a 10% stake.
Toyota President Akio Toyoda said that "with Suzuki and Daihatsu joining the project and working together, we’ll be able to expand our circle of cooperation to not only cover commercial vehicles but also mini vehicles."
Toyota believes that this expansion will help Japan "take one step closer to a better mobility society."

How will this help the brands gain an edge in the EV market?

Auto giants like Tesla and General Motors are competing to dominate the EV market. As an automaker that focused on electrification right from the start, Tesla has a huge advantage in the market. That’s likely one of the reasons why Toyota,
Isuzu
, and other Japanese automakers have joined hands to work on EV technology together.
Daihatsu’s president Soichiro Okudaira said that being part of the pact and introducing connected, mini-commercial vehicles would allow data-sharing. This is a competitive advantage that allows the companies to provide better services to customers and improve logistics efficiency.
As the EV market ramps up, automakers will need to set their vehicles apart from the competition in order to succeed. For now, collaborating on EV technology will help the Japanese automakers in the CJP accelerate their manufacturing process.

Goals of the collaboration

Isuzu’s press release
outlined some of the CJP’s main goals:
  • Improving logistics efficiency by building a connected-technology infrastructure that links truck logistics with mini-commercial vehicles
  • Expanding the use of advanced safety technologies from commercial vehicles to mini vehicles
  • Cooperating on the electrification of affordable, high-quality mini vehicles that can be sustainably produced
Mini vehicles, which Suzuki and Daihatsu excel in, account for 31 million out of 78 million vehicles owned in Japan. They are essential for people who live in rural communities. Mini-commercial vehicles also cover areas that are hard to reach and support last-mile logistics.
The CJP is a collaborative effort that helps with mini-vehicle manufacturing issues which are difficult for individual companies to solve on their own. The partnership will allow Japanese automakers to electrify mini-vehicles and equip them with affordable advanced
safety technologies
.
The auto industry’s mission includes "improving people’s lives" and "leaving a better Japan and a better planet for the next generation." The CJP collaboration hopes to help fulfill this. The press release says that the CJP intends to consider coordination with other like-minded partners.
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