SMM News: last week, Toyota announced that it would purchase batteries from Ningde era, BYD's blockbuster news unsurprisingly detonated the entire circle of friends in the industry. Toyota's purchase of batteries can cause such a stir for two main reasons: as a pioneer of plug-in hybrid vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, Toyota is saying goodbye to its past "stubbornness" and starting to power pure electric vehicles; Batteries will be bought not only from Ningde, but also from BYD.
For a long time, Toyota, which has been adhering to the technical route of hybrid power and hydrogen fuel cells, has suddenly said that it wants to purchase a large number of power batteries and power pure electric vehicles, and the signals released to the outside world are also quite worth thinking about and interpreting.
Signal one: countermeasures for the Development of China's Automobile Industry
China is Toyota's most important market, but in 2018, China's "average fuel consumption of passenger car enterprises and new energy vehicle points parallel management method" (referred to as "double points", CAFC and NEV points) began to implement. Among them, NEV integral is the key point. The proportion of new energy vehicle points (or NEV points) is required to be 10 per cent in 2019 and will rise to 12 per cent in 2020.
Compared with Nissan, BMW, Daimler, Volkswagen and other mainstream international car companies, Toyota lags behind in launching pure electric vehicles in the Chinese market, which makes its NEV points have no advantage, and China's relevant policies have punitive measures. For NEV points unpaid enterprises, suspend the production of some fuel models.
Toyota's top priority is to expand the proportion of its new energy vehicles in sales. Previously, Toyota planned to launch 10 pure electric vehicles in 2020. Less than a year before the launch of pure electric models next year, it is important to ensure the supply of batteries.
At the same time, it is also the Chinese market, the use of Chinese power battery enterprises of the battery, it is possible to avoid the impact of other follow-up policies.
Signal 2: policy-oriented Hybrid Power Technology concession Pure Electric
In 1997, Toyota launched the Prius, the world's first hybrid car, and now it has sold more than 4 million vehicles. At the same time, the hybrid technology based on this model has been widely used in other Toyota models, Toyota hybrid vehicle sales have exceeded 10 million. The industry believes that Toyota has obvious advantages in hybrid technology.
Although China is the largest market for new energy vehicles, the attitude of some local governments in China on whether plug-in vehicles should be defined as "new energy" vehicles is not clear, resulting in less than expected promotion and development of plug-in vehicles in China. And pure electric does not exist this kind of dispute, therefore pure electric also becomes the domestic each land force to push the key point. The data show that from January to April, the production and marketing of new energy vehicles in China were 368000 and 360000 respectively: among them, the production and marketing of pure electric vehicles were 286000 and 278000, respectively. The proportion was 77.72% and 77.22%, respectively. The production and marketing of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles were 81000 and 82000 respectively, accounting for 22.01% and 22.78%, respectively.
On the other hand, the strong support of the Chinese government for pure electric vehicles has also effectively led to the accelerated transformation of the global mainstream automobile enterprises, and the world-famous traditional automobile enterprises, such as Volkswagen, General Motors, Daimler, BMW, and so on, have increased their investment. And issued their own pure electric vehicle product development plan.
Although Toyota has a clear advantage in hybrid technology, it is "too high to beat the cold". Toyota has already given its attitude as to whether to eat or not to eat the big cake in the pure electric car market.
Signal 3: solid state battery technology is temporarily difficult to commercialize
In the technical route of pure electric vehicles, in fact, Toyota has also been riveted before, hoping to grasp the initiative of the next generation of pure electric vehicles through the technical route of solid-state batteries. In May 2017, Toyota, Panasonic, GS soup and other top industrial chain enterprises in Japan jointly developed solid-state batteries with the support of the Ministry of economy and Trade of Japan. In October of the same year, Toyota announced that it had invested more than 200 people to accelerate the research and development of solid-state battery technology, and hoped to realize commercial application by 2020. In June 2018, Toyota joined forces with 22 automobile and battery companies, including Nissan, Honda and Panasonic, to launch the development of a new generation of high-efficiency battery "all-solid-state battery" core technology, and strive to establish the technology by 2022 and realize commercial application. But the progress of the technology has not been as expected, and it has been reported that Toyota believes that solid-state batteries will be commercialized after 2025. The repeated delays in the commercialization of solid-state batteries also suggest that a breakthrough in the technology will not be easy.
For Toyota, relying solely on solid-state battery reversals will no doubt leave plenty of opportunities for competitors. Therefore, it is urgent to return to the competitive track of ternary lithium batteries.
Signal 4: hydrogen fuel cell technology is equally long
Like the hybrid, Toyota is a pioneer in the technology of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. Toyota launched its first hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the FCEV, in 1996. By far, the world's best-selling hydrogen fuel cell passenger cars are also made by Toyota. Although hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are greener and have longer mileage, the hydrogenation speed is comparable to the refueling speed and the charging speed is several blocks away. However, not only China, but also from a global point of view, hydrogen fuel cell vehicles still have three mountains to cross: technology, cost and industrial chain. Many agencies predict that hydrogen fuel cell vehicles will be fully commercialized until 2025 or even around 2030.
Signal 5: Panasonic power battery is in short supply
Earlier this year, Toyota announced plans to form a battery manufacturing joint venture with Panasonic by 2020 in the hope of reducing battery manufacturing costs and increasing production capacity. Toyota, the joint venture, is understood to have a 51 per cent stake and Panasonic 49 per cent. When the joint venture is set up, control of Panasonic's other five own battery factories will also be handed over to the new company. This is also Toyota in the transition to electrification, the layout of upstream power batteries, in order to ensure battery supply.
But the reality is, on the one hand, Panasonic is still unable to meet Tesla's power battery demand, Musk complained on Twitter every day that the lack of Panasonic battery capacity has affected the mass production progress of its best-selling model Model 3; On the other hand, if capacity is tied to Panasonic alone, there is no doubt that the launch and sales of subsequent pure electric models will be constrained.
Signal 6: BYD's overseas supply is broken
Last week, Battery China said in an article that BYD's power battery capacity will exceed 40GWh's overseas customer expansion this year, BYD's power battery supply has accelerated. According to the head of BYD, "in addition to domestic customers, including overseas customers." Toyota's announcement that it will buy batteries from BYD confirms this. BYD battery external supply has finally made substantial progress.
From a domestic point of view, BYD power battery installed capacity ranked second; from a global point of view, BYD power battery installed capacity ranked third. But at present, BYD power battery is still mainly self-supplied. Power battery application branch data show that at present, only Dongfeng Motor and other less than 10 car enterprises are Biadi power battery customers.
For BYD, the supply of power batteries to Toyota will provide a good model and reference for its customers at home and abroad.
What are the effects?
According to Toyota's previous plans, Toyota plans to more than triple its annual sales of electric vehicles from 2018 to at least 5.5 million by 2030. Hybrid and plug-in hybrid models will account for 4.5 million, while fuel cells and pure electric models will account for more than 1 million. But Toyota found that the plan could make it miss out on opportunities for change in the auto industry. Toyota Motor Co., Ltd. revealed on June 7 that its goal of increasing global sales of new energy vehicles to more than 5.5 million vehicles by 2030 is expected to be reached about five years ahead of schedule, that is, 2025.
As a result, Toyota may also adjust the proportion of hybrid, pure electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles in its new energy vehicles. In the short term, hydrogen fuel cell vehicles remain challenging in mass production in 2025, with pure electric vehicles expected to account for a significant increase in their annual sales target of 5.5 million vehicles.
It is worth noting that Toyota is also speeding up the development of pure electric models. On June 6, Toyota and Subaru announced that they had agreed to jointly develop a special platform for medium and large pure electric passenger vehicles and would jointly develop a C-class pure electric SUV model for sale under their respective brands.
Toyota's power on pure electric models will undoubtedly have an impact on China's new energy car companies. For domestic car companies, there is another competitor. In the past, Toyota was a very strong competitor in the domestic market and a force that could not be ignored. It joined the pure electric competition and relied on its strong sales network and market experience. With its technology accumulation in the field of plug-in and fuel vehicles, there is no doubt about its competitiveness in the pure electric market. Therefore, in addition to Tesla, BMW, Daimler, Audi and other international well-known car enterprises, domestic new energy vehicle enterprises, new car forces will usher in a new enemy.
It is worth noting that hybrid models are generally higher than pure electric models, Toyota launched pure electric models, the launch of a price range of 15-300000 yuan. This range coincides with the domestic market for many new energy models.
Whether for battery companies or car companies, in the wave of global electrification, the battery market is undoubtedly an important territory for them to compete fiercely, because the global mainstream car companies are laying out the pure electric market. Even Toyota, which has always stuck to hybrid and hydrogen fuel, is starting to launch pure electric models, so other carmakers probably don't have a choice. This leads to the future of the giants for high-quality battery competition will be more intense, high-quality battery capacity shortage may continue for a long time, for enterprises focusing on battery quality, is undoubtedly ushered in a good opportunity for development.