Toyota unveils bold new environmental targets

The world’s largest automaker, Japan’s Toyota Motor Corp., unveiled an ambitious goal of reducing global average new-vehicle C02 emissions by 90% by 2050. The Toyota Environmental Challenge 2050 aims to reduce the negative impact of manufacturing and driving vehicles as much as possible, the company said.

The plan involves gradually phasing out its gasoline-powered cars, which currently represent 85% of its sales.

“It wouldn’t be easy for gasoline and diesel cars to survive,” said Kiyotaka Isa, senior managing officer of Toyota Motor Corp. “With such massive decline in engine-powered cars, it’s like the world is turning upside down and Toyota has to change its ways.”

The company’s vision includes a heavy reliance on hybrid and fuel cell vehicles. It expects to sell 30,000 of a new model, the hydrogen-powered Mirai, by 2020 worldwide. The Mirai went on sale in Japan last year, and will be sold in North America and Europe by the end of this year.

Toyota said its goal is to sell 1.5 million hybrids annually and 15 million hybrids cumulatively by 2020. In the past 18 years, it sold about eight million of these vehicles.

The company said its target is to reduce average CO2 emissions from new vehicles by more than 22% by 2020.