The All-New Toyota bZ4X
- All-new, all-electric mid-size SUV, the first model in Toyota’s new bZ – Beyond Zero – range of battery electric vehicles
- First model to feature eTNGA philosophy, which integrates the battery unit into the vehicle’s structure, giving extra rigidity and a low centre of gravity for rewarding driving dynamics
- eTNGA is a modular architecture that can be easily adapted for different vehicle sizes and types
- Available in front and all-wheel drive versions
- bZ4X brings class-leading off-road capability to the BEV market with optional all-wheel drive system
- Driving range of up to 516 km for FWD model, 470 km with AWD
The bZ4X is Toyota’s first all-new battery electric vehicle (BEV). It breaks new ground in launching the company’s bZ “Beyond Zero” sub-brand of zero emission models and in bringing genuine SUV off-road driving capability to the BEV market for the first time. Its introduction will accelerate Toyota’s multi-technology path towards its goal of carbon neutrality.
The bZ4X’s quality and performance are founded on Toyota’s world-leading experience in electrified vehicle technology, a heritage that spans more than a quarter of a century. The company has also worked with Subaru as its development partner for bZ4X, benefiting from the manufacturer’s renowned expertise in areas such as all-wheel drive engineering.
The bZ4X is not an adaptation of an existing model. Instead, it is wholly original and the first of what will be a series of different bZ vehicles to be constructed on a new Toyota platform dedicated to BEVs. eTNGA integrates the battery unit into the chassis, entirely beneath the vehicle floor. The result is a strong and highly rigid framework and a low centre of gravity, defining factors in the bZ4X’s stable and rewarding dynamic performance. The modular design allows it to be easily adapted for use in a wide range of different vehicle types, spanning from small to larger segments.
The bZ4X is available in both front and all-wheel drive versions. The FWD model features a 150-kW front-mounted eAxle that produces 204 DIN hp and 265 Nm maximum torque. The AWD model, uses front and rear 80 kW eAxles with a combined output of up to 218 DIN hp and 337 Nm of torque. Class-leading off-road performance is enabled by the AWD system, with X-MODE to give secure and stable performance through mud and snow.
The lithium-ion battery unit has a 71.4 kWh capacity and comprises 96 cells which are water-cooled and constantly monitored individually for any signs of abnormality or degradation. Toyota’s confidence in the quality of the battery is reflected in a guarantee it will retain at least 70 per cent of its capacity up to 10 years, covered by the original EV Manufacturing Warranty until 8 years or 160.000 kilometres, and with the additional Extended Battery Care up to 10 years or 1 million kilometres driven that is activated by an annual EV Health Check (T&C apply).
The bZ4X has an official driving range (WLTP standard) of up to 516 km for the FWD version and up to 470 km for the AWD model. Fast-charging to 80% capacity can be accomplished in around 30 minutes, in normal temperature conditions. At launch, the vehicle has a 6.6 kW on-board charger. Cars being produced towards the end of 2022 will be built with an 11 kW unit for faster charging performance.
BEYOND ZERO: A NEW TOYOTA SUB-BRAND
- bZ4X expresses Toyota’s “Beyond Zero” human-centred philosophy for delivering benefits beyond zero carbon
- First in a series of bZ products due for launch in Europe
- Technology draws on a quarter of a century of Toyota leadership in electrified vehicles
The bZ4X introduces bZ – Beyond Zero – Toyota’s new sub-brand focused on how battery electric vehicles can do much more than deliver zero emissions on the journey to carbon neutrality. Going “beyond zero”, Toyota sees BEVs as key contributors to better mobility for all, helping improve people’s lives with freedom of movement, safety and peace of mind.
The bZ4X is the first in what will be a series of bZ products to be launched globally. Its name references the size of the car – 4 for mid-size – and the vehicle type, in this case X for crossover SUV.
Beyond Zero reinforces the environmental leadership Toyota has achieved since making zero emissions its ultimate goal with the introduction of Prius, the world’s first mass-market hybrid electric car, 25 years ago. Since then, the company has constantly developed and improved its hybrid technology to develop a multi-path approach to reducing and eventually eliminating carbon emissions, with hybrid electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and zero emission battery electric and fuel cell electric models.
Beyond Zero is a wholly human-centred philosophy and will bring new products and services with strong customer appeal that will enhance the pleasure of driving, improving safety for all road users and helping build better societies around the world. It has four core values:
You and Others – the bZ4X has an open and spacious cabin with home-like comfort. There’s generous leg room for rear seat passengers and the atmosphere is calm and quiet thanks not just to the quieter electric powertrain but also to effective measures to block out road and wind noise.
You and Your Car – developing the car from a means of transport into an intelligent partner. The bZ4X is designed for smooth, intuitive driving and has authentic SUV off-road performance. The BEV driving experience informs both the new driver’s cockpit layout and the car’s sleek and powerful exterior design. The latest multimedia technologies provide seamless connectivity and multiple methods for communicating with the car, for information, entertainment and comfort.
You and the Environment – going beyond reducing emissions to actively improve the environment. Going beyond its zero emission performance, bZ4X can generate its own power using an optional solar roof panel.
You and Society – vehicles that can make a positive contribution to society. With its comprehensive Toyota T-Mate preventive safety and advanced driver assistance systems, the bZ4X improves safety for all road users. In addition to the safeguards provided by Toyota Safety Sense, special measures are in place to monitor the battery’s performance and protect it in the event of an impact.
Toyota’s multi-tech route to zero carbon
Toyota is a “full line-up” manufacturer of vehicles that can help everyone reduce their carbon footprint in all parts of the world. This includes hybrid electric, plug-in hybrid electric, fuel cell electric and battery electric vehicles – the latter range set to grow with the roll-out of new bZ “Beyond Zero” models, starting with the bZ4X SUV. Toyota calls this multi-tech approach “the power of and.”
Since the introduction of the original Prius in 1997, the company has put more than 20 million electrified vehicles on the road. Throughout, it has recognised that environmentally efficient vehicles can only be effective through widespread use: they must be accessible and desirable for customers, meeting their mobility needs.
As the pace of electrification accelerates, Toyota expects to sell 5.5 million electrified vehicles a year worldwide by 2025, with a line-up of 70 models, including 15 zero emission vehicles.
In Europe, its forecast is for 90% of its Western European sales to be electrified vehicles by 2025, of which at least 10% will be ZEVs. This figure will increase to 100% electrified by the end of the decade, with at least 50% ZEVs (a greater proportion if market demand and infrastructure development permit). And by 2035 the target is a full 100% reduction in new vehicle CO2 emissions – potentially earlier in some individual national markets.
This ambition was voiced by Matt Harrison, President and CEO Toyota Motor Europe (TME) at Toyota’s Kenshiki (“insight”) media event in December 2021. He said: “Moving beyond 2030, we expect to see further ZEV demand acceleration and Toyota will be ready to achieve 100% CO2 reduction in all new vehicles by 2035 in Western Europe, assuming that sufficient electric charging and hydrogen refuelling infrastructures are in place by then, together with the renewable energy capacity increases that will be required”
Carbon neutrality and the Toyota Environmental Challenge 2050
The elimination of carbon emissions figures strongly in Toyota’s Environmental Challenge 2050, a series of six environmental targets set by the company in 2015. Toyota’s global ambition is to eliminate CO2 from its new vehicles, all its business operations, and the full vehicle lifecycle, including the manufacture of parts and materials, logistics and the processes for end-of-life recycling and disposing of vehicles.
By 2050, Toyota aims to reduce CO2 emissions from its vehicles by 90% compared to 2010 levels. Its production centres will see carbon emissions cut to zero, helped by the development of new manufacturing technologies and the adoption of clean and renewable energy sources.
The Environmental Challenge also focuses on how Toyota’s water usage can be minimised and optimised; how the company can help establish a recycling-based society and systems; and how a future society that lives in harmony with nature can be achieved. More information about the Toyota Environmental Challenge 2050 and interim targets set for 2030 can be found at (weblink).
Event venue: CopenHill, Copenhagen
CopenHill, more formally known as Amager Bakke, is a new landmark on the Copenhagen skyline, an energy plant that converts the city’s waste into heating and electricity for 150,000 households in the local area. It is one of the most efficient waste-to-energy plants in the world and its carbon storage system makes at a key element in Copenhagen’s mission to become a carbon neutral city.
CopenHill is one example that reflects the Beyond Zero philosophy. As well as being functional, the site also serves as a centre for public recreation with an all-weather ski slope and green park.
THE bZ4X: TECHNICAL DETAIL
- First model to feature Toyota’s eTNGA philosophy, dedicated to electric vehicles
- Architecture central to achieving extensive cabin space and load capacity
- Front-wheel drive model uses front-mounted 150 kW motor; all-wheel drive model powered by 80 kW front and rear motors
- New AWD with X-MODE brings authentic off-road capability to the electric vehicle market
- Extensive measures to maintain battery performance, backed by the additional Extended Battery Care guaranteeing 70% of original capacity up to 10 years of use or one million kilometres driven (T&C apply).
- Fast charging to 80% capacity in around 30 minutes
eTNGA philosophy: a new modular architecture dedicated to BEVs
The bZ4X is the first car to be built on the company’s new BEV architecture, based on eTNGA philosophy and designed, optimised and dedicated to electric vehicles.
This completely new architecture has the flexibility to be used for potential future bZ models and is designed for production at scale. Critically, the slim battery unit is located fully beneath the vehicle floor and forms part of the chassis, helping achieve a low centre of gravity, ideal front/rear weight balance and high body rigidity.
The eTNGA’s modular design means it can be easily adapted for use in vehicles across a huge variety of vehicle types and sizes. It can accommodate batteries of different sizes and outputs and both (as in the case of bZ4X) front and all-wheel drive powertrains. The fixed elements are the position of the front and (if used) rear motors, the under-bonnet layout, the driver’s position relative to the front wheels and the width of the battery unit; the changeable elements include the wheelbase, the number of battery cells and the front and rear overhangs. Thus, variations can be applied to meet different customer or model design requirements, using different front, centre and rear modules.
The platform’s core qualities combine to give the bZ4X stable and responsive dynamic performance, both with front and all-wheel drive.
Its design allows the bZ4X to have a long wheelbase; at 2,850 mm, this is 160 mm longer than in the RAV4. The result is excellent interior space – both in the cabin and the load compartment. For rear seat passengers there is one-metre couple distance, a flat floor and generous leg room that’s on a par with larger vehicles.
The flexible load space features an adjustable, two-level deck board and an underfloor space that can add an extra 71 mm to the load height when taller items need to be carried. With the rear seats in place and the deck board in the lower position, there is up to 452 l (VDA) – room enough to carry three 82 l suitcases or two mountain bikes. The rear seats can be split-folded 60:40 and have a reclining function. The space beneath the deck holds a tool box and provides room for a warning triangle or the car’s charging cable; the folding tonneau cover can also be neatly stowed.
Powertrain: front and all-wheel drive
The front-wheel drive bZ4X is powered by a high-response, front-mounted 150 kW electric motor. It produces 204 DIN hp and 266 Nm of torque, enabling 0-100 km/h acceleration in 7.5 seconds and a top speed of 160 km/h.
The AWD model features separate front and rear 80 kW motors driving the front and rear axles. Maximum power is 218 DIN hp, with 337 Nm of torque; the acceleration time from 0-100 km/h is reduced to 6.9 seconds. The use of power from the front and rear motors is optimised to achieve better overall power consumption. For example, only the front motor is used when only low drive torque is needed.
The bZ4X uses a new eAxle design that integrates the transaxle, motor and inverter in a single unit. The light and compact design helps achieve shorter overhangs and a low centre of gravity for the vehicle and more cabin and load space. This eAxle is being used for the first time in the bZ4X, but it benefits from the technical expertise Toyota has gained from more than 25 years’ designing electric motor-generators for its hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric models.
Numerous measures have been taken to reduce losses in the motor and inverter, including using a smaller stator and a high-speed/high-output rotor and adopting a low-viscosity oil for the transaxle. The transaxle geartrain has a simple three-axis design, while a pre-load differential and equal-length left and right driveshafts help ensure straight-line drivability.
The front eAxle includes an electricity supply unit (ESU) which brings together the power transformation functions in a single unit, bringing savings in size and weight. For example, components such as the branch box and DC relay which were contained in the battery pack in Toyota’s previous BEV models have now been brought into the ESU, allowing the battery pack to be flattened, in turn helping achieve a low, flat cabin floor.
With the motor ECU located closer to the motor, there is quicker detection of any wheel-slip. The rapid application of precise drive torque control dramatically reduces initial wheel-slip for more stable driving.
The high responsiveness of the electric motor allows for a regeneration boost function. Coasting deceleration is increased to 0.15 G when the driver comes off the accelerator, operating with a natural feel and compensating for around 80% of deceleration when driving.
New all-wheel drive system with X-MODE
Toyota worked with its development partner Subaru in engineering a new all-wheel drive system that draws on the great AWD heritage of both companies. This new system creates an unprecedented new value for BEVs, giving the bZ4X a genuine, class-leading off-road driving capability – a market first for an all-electric SUV.
The driver can choose from different X-MODE settings which tailor performance for snow/mud; deep snow and mud (speeds below 20 km/h); and provide Grip Control for tougher off-road driving (speeds below 10 km/h).
Using X-MODE with Grip Control allows the driver to concentrate on accurate steering, with the system taking care of vehicle speed when travelling downhill, uphill or on the level. When travelling downhill, the driver can also use the car’s Downhill Assist Control for a similar level of assistance.
The high-density lithium-ion battery comprises 96 cells and has a 355.2 voltage rating. Its gross capacity is 71.4 kWh and it has an ambient temperature operating range of between -30 and +60°C.
Key to the battery’s quality and durability is multiple monitoring of the voltage, current and temperature, from individual cell level. If any abnormal heat generation is detected, controls are automatically triggered. Countermeasures have been put place to mitigate any material degradation, and there are safeguards in the manufacturing process to prevent foreign matter from entering the battery.
This is the first battery in a Toyota vehicle to adopt a water cooling system. This uses a refrigerant and helps maintain stable output with each cell individually cooled. The system is linked to the vehicle’s air conditioning system so there is power-efficient co-ordination of battery and cabin temperature control.
Thanks to an efficient and effective heating system, including a heat pump, reliability is also maintained in sub-zero temperatures.
Toyota’s confidence in the quality of the battery is reflected in a guarantee it will retain at least 70 per cent of its capacity up to 10 years, covered by the original EV Manufacturing Warranty until 8 years or 160.000 kilometres, and with the additional Extended Battery Care up to 10 years or 1 million kilometres driven that is activated by an annual EV Health Check (T&C apply).
Battery charging and driving range
European versions of the bZ4X use a battery suitable for reliable charging in very low temperatures. The battery can be fast-charged without compromising safety or service life: an 80% charge can be achieved in around 30 minutes with a 150 kW fast-charging system (CCS2); a full charge using a 230 V/32 A supply will take around 9.5 hours. From Q4 2022, an 11 kW three-phase on-board charger will replace the initial 6.6 kW unit.
The bZ4X’s official WLTP performance data confirms the vehicle will deliver a generous driving range. The front-wheel drive model will achieve up to 516 km on a fully charge battery, with an efficiency rating of 143.2 Wh/km (7 km/kW); the all-wheel drive version has an official range of up to 470 km with 158 Wh/km (6.3 km/kW) efficiency.
Solar panel roof
An optional solar panel roof is available for the bZ4X in selected markets. This allows renewable solar energy to be captured and used for charging the battery or operating auxiliary systems, via a solar ECU located under the rear seats. In a sunny climate, Toyota estimates sufficient power to travel 1,800 km could be obtained, or 11.7 km per day (equivalent to 140 smartphone charges).
When the car is parked with the ignition turned off, power from the solar panel is used to charge the main battery, ensuring a sufficient distance to empty and allowing power to be supplied for other purposes, such as electrical appliances. When the car is being driven, with the ignition on, the solar power is supplied to car’s auxiliary systems, reducing the draw on the main battery.
Driving range is an important consideration for EV customers and Toyota has brought to bear more than 25 years’ experience in high-capacity battery development to ensure that not only does the bZ4X offer peace of mind of in terms of the distance it can cover, but also reassurance that that capability can be maintained year after year. In line with development targets for the battery, only a marginal reduction in battery performance is expected.
As described above, the eTNGA philosophy endows the bZ4X with fundamental high rigidity and a low centre of gravity that form the basis of stable, responsive and rewarding performance. Further measures have been implemented to reinforce these qualities, for example, using a strengthened front subframe for the radiator support which reduces weight at the front of the car, reducing the moment of inertia and contributing to better turning performance. There is further weight saving in the front powertrain compartment, including aluminium cross-members, while the use of hot-stamped and high-tensile steels in key locations in the construction brings rigidity for superior impact performance without compromising vehicle mass.
The rear framework includes a double ring structure and a rear pillar support structure, maintaining good load space while providing rigidity to help withstand impact forces from multiple directions. A new, integrated front pillar section is 15% thinner than those found in vehicles of comparable weight, yet is engineered to withstand forces from multi-directional impacts.
There are specific measures to protect the battery unit in the event of a front, rear or side impact and there is an aluminium undercover that provides protection when travelling over rough surfaces
Suspension, steering and braking
The bZ4X has a MacPherson strut front suspension design and double wishbone at the rear; both systems incorporate an anti-roll bar. The target was to achieve an ideal level of control and safety performance, leveraging the characteristics of the eTNGA philosophy to deliver ride comfort, stability and controllability.
The electronically controlled braking system uses front and rear ventilated discs, with performance tuned for easy control with a feel that strikes an optimum balance between effectiveness and rigidity. An electric parking brake is fitted as standard.
The rack-and-pinion electric power steering adjusts the level of assistance in line with vehicle speed. Later, in 2023, the bZ4X will be available with One Motion Grip, a new steer-by-wire system.
Wheels and tyres
According to model grade, the bZ4X uses 18 or 20-inch wheels. The 18-inch alloy rims use a full resin cover in silver and black that has a flat surface aero design and a number of small holes to help with brake cooling; the 20-inch five-double-spoke wheels have a contrast black and machined finish with grey resin accents. Tyres are 235/60R18 or 235/50R20.
DESIGN AND LIFE ON BOARD
- Exterior design explores the styling freedoms offered by a battery electric vehicle
- “Hi-Tech and Emotion” design theme blends advanced BEV looks with original SUV qualities
- Frontal design presents new signature Toyota BEV “hammerhead” shape
- Cabin design and lay-out evokes the comfort and space of a living room
Toyota has produced a sleek and robust design for the bZ4X that’s equally appropriate for modern urban life and the countryside, blending the advanced look of a BEV with the original qualities of an SUV. The theme for the design team was “Hi-Tech and Emotion,” challenging conventions while meeting customer expectations with an advanced feel and high-quality surfaces.
The frontal appearance is smart and avoids unnecessary decoration. It is characterised by a new brand-defining “hammerhead” shape with signature slim LED headlight units and an emphasis on the front corners that communicates the car’s strong stance.
In side view, the silhouette is sleek with a low overall height, slender front pillars and a low axis line that reflects the low centre of gravity achieved with the new platform and its low-set, integrated battery unit. Wheel arch mouldings, large wheels (up to 20-inch diameter) pushed out to the corners of the body and thick rocker panels express the car’s authentic SUV character. At the rear, the design focus is again on emphasising the corners, with a distinctive taillight bridging the width of the vehicle.
Compared to the Toyota RAV4, the bZ4X has an overall height that’s lower by 85 mm, shorter overhangs and a wheelbase that that’s 160 mm longer. The bonnet line is also reduced in height by 50 mm. Overall agility is reflected in a class-leading 5.7 m turning radius.
The design incorporates aerodynamic elements that contribute to the generous driving range, including apertures set deep in the front bumper corners to create smooth air curtains; a full underbody cover; a split roof spoiler and (optional) rear duck-tail lip spoiler; rear diffuser; and a precisely angled rear screen. The slim lower grille has a shutter that adjusts to channel cooling air flow to the battery and helps reduce wind resistance.
To reduce intrusive noise, thicker glass is used in the side windows and there is a wider, uniform gap between the door mirror and front three-quarter panel, reducing the sound produced by wind turbulence.
The bZ4X is available in six monotone colours, including new Precious Metal and Precious Silver, plus five bi-tone finishes that combine coloured bodywork with a contrasting black roof and pillars.
Design – interior
The theme for the interior is comfort and spaciousness that give the cabin the ambience of a living room, a sense that’s enhanced by the use of soft, woven trim textures on the dashboard, satin-finish detailing and the option of a panoramic roof.
The instrument panel is slim and low set, adding to the sense of openness and the driver’s forward visibility. This design has been made possible thanks to the use of a new air conditioning unit that is 30% more compact.
The “hands on the wheel, eyes on the road” principle is supported by the human-centred cockpit in which the seven-inch TFT instrument and information display sits directly in the driver’s forward eyeline, top-mounted above the line of the steering wheel, so the meters can be viewed with minimal eye movement.
The centre console is the focus of the “social” quality of the cabin design, accessible for everyone on board and offering a total of 20 litres of storage space. This includes an open area beneath the console, suitable for a pair of shoes or handbag, and individual spaces to carry everything from a smartphone to a tablet and large bottle. In a neat touch, the smartphone cubby has a transparent lid so you can see at a glance if you have received an alert.
According to the multimedia system specified, the bZ4X has an 8 or 12.3-inch touch screen display. The large display is used for the latest Toyota Smart Connect system, with advanced functions and improved voice recognition control to access information and entertainment and to operate a number of vehicle functions, such as the air conditioning and windows.
The driver’s multimedia options include useful connected services that can be accessed using the Toyota MyT app. Of particular value to drivers of the bZ4X and other Toyota BEVs is the access it can provide to one of the world’s largest network of charging points. Contributing to Toyota’s “Kanzen” approach to giving owners complete peace of mind, customers can sign up to the service, choose their preferred tariff and use the app to find available charging stations nearby and make automatic payments. The status of individual charging points can also be checked using the app.
Other current MyT functions include “find my car,” which retrieves the vehicle’s location and can provide details on a map, together with navigation directions if required. “Share to Car” allows for journeys to be planned and then sent to the car’s navigation system, while “Car to Door” gives directions for the last part of a journey after the vehicle has been parked. Driving analytics, service reminders, the level of battery charge and remote activation of the hazard lights are also available through the app.
The car can be locked and unlocked remotely and you can check the car’s status – whether windows or roof are open, the doors unlocked, the lights on or the key left inside the vehicle.
Instead of a conventional shift lever, the bZ4X has a new dial control: the outer section is depressed and turned to the left or right to select drive or reverse. The P (Park) setting is a one-touch button immediately behind the dial control.
LED cabin lighting is featured in the front footwells, centre console, door panels and door handles and the load space. On higher grade models, rear footwell lighting is provided, the driver’s seat is power-adjustable and both front seats have integrated heating and ventilation. Upholstery options are perforated leather or synthetic leather; synthetic leather with fabric; or all-fabric. Colour-way choices are black-on-black or a combination of light grey and black.
TOYOTA T-MATE SAFETY AND DRIVER ASSISTANCE
- Toyota T-Mate brings together comprehensive safety and driver assistance features
- Provisions include the latest generation of Toyota Safety Sense, with preventive safety systems to provide even greater protection against common accident risks
- Toyota Safety Sense software seamlessly upgraded with convenient over-the-air updates
The bZ4X benefits from the wide-ranging support and assistance of Toyota T-Mate, the collective name for the systems that help safeguard against accidents, provide protection in the event of an impact and assist the driver when it comes to making manoeuvres, whether parking the car on a crowded city street or driving in highway traffic.
With Toyota T-Mate, drivers can have the confidence that their car is always looking out for them.
The advanced technologies are designed to protect everyone on board and also other road users, helping Toyota progress towards the goal of future mobility with no accidents or road traffic injuries.
Vehicle accident research in the USA (Impact Research LLC, September 2019) shows that vehicles equipped with Toyota Safety Sense were 37% less likely to strike a vehicle in a front-to-rear crash compared to vehicles not using the technology. The researchers declare that the results of this and previous studies show that the widespread deployment of automatic emergency braking (as featured in Toyota Safety Sense’s Pre-Collision System), could help prevent thousands of related deaths and injuries every year.
On the bZ4X, Toyota T-Mate includes the latest generation of Toyota Safety Sense, with preventive safety systems that have been developed to provide greater functionality and more detailed monitoring of the car’s surroundings and other road users.
For example, making a left or right turn across the flow of traffic at a busy intersection presents hazards not just from oncoming and crossing traffic, but also from pedestrians or cyclists crossing the road you are turning into. The bZ4X has the latest version of the Pre-Collision System (PCS) constantly monitors the road for these hazards, warning the driver or initiating emergency braking if there’s an imminent risk of an impact.
A pedestrian stepping off the kerb, or a vehicle stranded on the roadside can prompt the driver to swerve. The PCS is again primed to help with Emergency Steering Assist, helping steer around the hazard while keeping the car stable and within its traffic lane. The PCS also recognises when there’s a risk of a collision from sudden, sharp acceleration during low-speed driving, automatically regulating the driving force and providing braking control.
Even a brief loss of concentration can cause a car to wander off-course; with Lane Trace Assist, the bZ4X will keep faithfully to its correct path, guided by the markings on the road, or, if necessary, the road margin or the vehicle ahead. Here the safety aspect includes reducing the burden on the driver on long highway journeys. The system will co-operate with the Full-Range Adaptive Cruise Control, so the vehicle’s speed is safely adjusted when travelling through a highway bend. It also keeps an eye on the driver’s use of the steering wheel, brakes and accelerator pedal: if they are not used for a certain amount of time, it will initiate an Emergency Driving Stop System. On higher grade models, the level of monitoring is increased with the use of a camera to check on the driver’s head position.
It's not always possible to see every road sign you pass, but on main roads and highways the Road Sign Assist gives the driver a reminder of the principal commands, warnings and the speed limit.
When it comes to looking out for other road users, Safe Exit Assist helps avoid the common risk of inadvertently opening a car door into the path of a vehicle, cyclist or pedestrian approaching from the rear. It uses the car’s Blind Spot Monitor to scan the road and flash a warning should driver or passenger be about to open the door and risk a collision.
The behaviour of pedestrians and other vehicles can be hard to predict, but with Proactive Driving Assist, coming in 2023, the bZ4X is able to scan the road ahead calculate collision risks and operate the brakes and steering at an early stage to help prevent an accident. This can be, for example, a person or cyclist close to the edge of the road or about to cross, or a vehicle ahead.
For peace of mind and complete customer convenience, Toyota is able to provide seamless software revisions and upgrades over-the-air for cars equipped with Toyota Safety Sense 3 and MM21 multimedia system, via the car’s DCM (data communications module).
TOYOTA bZ4X AND THE EUROPEAN BEV MARKET
- Toyota offers customers peace-of-mind with bZ4X vehicle leasing packages through KINTO, its global mobility provider
- One-stop-shop approach takes care of all aspects of vehicle ownership
Across Europe there is great diversity in the strength and development of the market for battery electric vehicles. Some markets, such as Norway, are progressing towards full electrification at a much faster pace than others where issues such as infrastructure and consumer confidence and acceptance need to be addressed.
This business landscape reaffirms the value of Toyota’s multi-path technology approach to electrification, helping motorists progress to BEVs through other electrified vehicle options, such as hybrid electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (as detailed in the chapter above).
To help people make the change to a BEV, Toyota is marketing the bZ4X with leasing options that provide complete peace of mind by covering all aspects of vehicle use. This approach, which Toyota calls “Kanzen,” provides customers with a one-stop shop for vehicle leasing, with monthly payments to cover vehicle use, maintenance, roadside assistance, accessories, daily charging and, if preferred, bespoke insurance.
The leasing is provided through KINTO, Toyota’s global mobility provider. Toyota expects leasing to become the preferred method to access vehicles – the “new norm” – as markets move to full electric, zero emission mobility.
The goal is to make mobility easier for all by offering personalised leasing solutions, lasting from hours to years. To do this, Toyota aims to keep the assets – the cars – in its ownership in user cycles of up to 10 years with different users.