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Ford, Toyota collaborate on new hybrid system

Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. are going 50-50 on the joint development of a new hybrid system for light truck and SUVs.


August 22, 2011
by PLANT STAFF

DEARBORN, Mich.: Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. are going 50-50 on the joint development of a new hybrid system for light trucks and SUVs.

Both companies, which have signed a memorandum of understanding and say they will have a formal agreement in place by next year, intend to bring the best of their independently developed hybrid powertrain technologies to the new system, which will be used in rear-wheel-drive light trucks appearing later this decade.

They also agreed to complement each other’s existing telematics platform standards.

The rear-wheel-drive hybrid system will be based on a new architecture that will be integrated into each company’s vehicles.

Both companies now sell hybrid cars, but trucks need a different system with power to tow and haul heavy loads.

Hybrid trucks would help automakers meet stricter government fuel economy and pollution standards in the US and other countries. In the US, the fleet of new cars and trucks will have to average 56.5 miles per gallon by 2025, although trucks will have lower mileage targets.

It will take a year for the companies to figure out who will do what research, Ford product development chief Derrick Kuzak said, noting it would be at least two or three years after that before a system can be developed. The companies aren’t sure yet what kind of gas mileage it will get.

The system would power some of Ford’s F-Series pickup trucks, the top-selling vehicle in the US, and it would run the Tundra, Toyota’s full-sized pickup truck. It also would be used in rear-wheel-drive sport utility vehicles.

Files from the Canadian Press