The ASEAN region has become a valuable market for automakers. As a result, more manufacturers are trying to penetrate and capture market share from customers in the region. Like others, Toyota also has big plans for the ASEAN, and it mainly involves electrification. With that, expect to see more hybrids and even battery electric vehicles in the region.
According to CNN Indonesia, the Japanese automaker will be investing an additional IDR 28 trillion or roughly PHP 94.32 billion into the Toyota Indonesia plant until 2024. The goal of the investment is to produce and sell a range of hybrid and electric vehicles in Indonesia.
Toyota Motor Corporation Asia Region CEO, Yoichi Miyazaki said that the automaker plans to introduce ten electric and hybrid vehicles for the Indonesian market within the next five years. Currently, there are no details about the exact models to be built, but the said vehicles are already in development.
Meanwhile, Bob Azam, Toyota Indonesia's director of administration, corporation, and external affairs explains that Indonesia will begin to produce hybrid cars starting next year, 2022. Similarly, no specific models were mentioned. However, Azam mentions that these vehicles will either be a brand new hybrid model or one based on existing models in their lineup.
“In 2022, we will produce hybrid models. New hybrids or hybridize existing models so that they can keep the supply chain there and new technology can be adopted, especially since these models have already been accepted in the export market,” Azam said.
But if Toyota plans to produce hybrid models in Indonesia starting 2022, wouldn't it be easier to hybridize existing models? Well, let's go through the Toyota models that are currently assembled in Indonesia. Currently, the Toyota Indonesia plant assembles the Avanza, Rush, Innova, Fortuner, Yaris, Vios, and even the Raize, to name a few.
According to the report, the vehicles Azam supposedly referred to in his statement were the Innova and Fortuner, hybrid versions of the two models specifically. Since the two models use the same IMV platform, it would be the earliest vehicles from Toyota Indonesia to get electrified. For reference, there has been no rumor of a hybrid Fortuner yet. But back in 2019, there was already a report of the Innova being hybridized.
With Toyota launching ten electric vehicles in Indonesia by 2024, the idea of a hybrid Fortuner and Innova isn't impossible. The question now is whether the rest of us in the ASEAN region will get the electrified MPV and SUV too. Do remember that the Fortuner sold in the Philippines is sourced from Indonesia. With that, it might be offered locally in the future. However, all Philippine-spec Innovas are built locally, so a hybrid Innova may not arrive anytime soon.
There's still a lot of mystery surrounding a hybrid Fortuner or Innova. But one thing is for certain: we can expect to see more hybrid vehicles being offered by Toyota in the ASEAN region in the years to come. Most of them might even come from Indonesia.