Toyota and Subaru announced that they will work together to build electric vehicles and develop autonomous drive.
Ever since concluding an agreement on business collaboration in 2005, partnership between Toyota and Subaru has included contract production by Subaru of Toyota vehicles and supply by Toyota of vehicles to Subaru, as well as joint development of the rear-wheel-drive Toyota 86 and Subaru BRZ sports car models.
Also, with vast changes enveloping the automotive industry, which is being called on to respond to the new domains of CASE (connected, autonomous/automated, shared, and electric), Toyota and Subaru disclosed this June that they have agreed to jointly develop a platform dedicated to battery electric vehicles and to jointly develop an all-electric model, both of which will employ Subaru’s AWD technologies and Toyota’s vehicle electrification technologies.
In this once-in-a-century period of profound transformation, by strengthening their bonds and aligning their capabilities, Toyota and Subaru aim to pursue driving enjoyment in the CASE era and to make ever-better cars beyond what either company has been able to achieve thus far.
Furthermore, to deepen their relationship and to strengthen their ties toward advancing to the next stage while respecting the identity of each other’s brand, the two companies have agreed that Toyota will increase its equity stake in Subaru and that Subaru will acquire shares in Toyota. Toyota will increase its shares of Subaru to 20 percent while Subaru will acquire an equivalent amount “for Toyota to acquire Subaru shares,” the announcement said.
Commenting on the agreement, Toyota President Akio Toyoda said: “During this once-in-a-century period of profound transformation, even if CASE changes how cars will be, driving enjoyment will remain an inherent part of automobiles and is something that I think we must continue to strongly preserve. I, myself, am a rallyist, and, through my experience of training hard in an Impreza, I have felt in my veins the wonders of Subaru’s AWD technologies. Meanwhile, we at Toyota have been going all out to hone our all-wheel-drive technologies by participating in the World Rally Championship, among other activities. Our companies, both of which have long pursued driving enjoyment, now want to pursue the possibilities of making ever-better cars suitable for the CASE era by bringing together our strengths and by further deepening our relationship.”
Subaru President Tomomi Nakamura said: “Between our company and Toyota is an alliance that already has a history of 14 years. During this time, we have deepened our bonds in various fields such as product development, production, and sales, including through personnel exchanges. By taking our relationship one step further and mutually honing our technologies, we will strengthen our ability to respond to CASE and other demands, and will accelerate our shared aspirations for making ever-better cars. This new step in our alliance with Toyota will lead to enhancing ‘Enjoyment and Peace of Mind’ that Subaru is committed to deliver; and I am confident that our customers will love what we offer through these efforts.”