Toyota’s first electric sedan, the bZ3, powered by BYD technology, received a warm welcome on its first day on the market. The bZ3 secured 5,000 orders on April 16, according to FAW-Toyota, the automaker’s joint venture in China.
The bZ3 was officially unveiled last October as Toyota’s second fully electric model in its bZ (Beyond Zero) lineup.
Toyota’s electric sedan will join the bZ4X SUV, the Japanese automaker’s first global electric vehicle. The bZ3 is co-developed by BYD Toyota EV Technology – a joint venture established with FAW-Toyota (a joint venture created by FAW Group and Toyota in 2000) and BYD, China’s largest EV maker.
Although the bZ3 is based on Toyota’s e-TNGA platform (the same used for the bZ4X), the electric sedan utilizes a lithium-ion LFP Blade battery, electric motor, and electronic control system from BYD.
The bZ3 differs from Toyota’s electric SUV with a low center of gravity and upgraded interior, including the automaker’s largest 12.8-inch suspended multimedia navigation system.
FAW-Toyota rolled out its first bZ3 model in March with a maximum 616 km (roughly 382 mi) CLTC range and a starting price of just 189,800 RMB ($27,000).
Toyota bZ3 electric sedan receives a warm welcome
After going on sale on April 16, FAW-Toyota said its bZ3 electric sedan orders reached 5,000, with sales momentum expected to continue growing.
The bZ3 will be offered in three versions, including Elite PRO, long-range PRO, and long-range Premium models.
The bZ3 is available with two different battery sizes – 135 kW and 180 kW – both with a maximum torque of 303 nm (224 lb-ft). In addition, two battery packs – 49.9 kWh and 65.3 kWh – deliver 517 km (321 miles) and 616 km (382) CLTC range, respectively.
The automaker also says the bZ3 can charge from 30% to 80% in 27 minutes with DC fast charge.
According to FAW-Toyota, those who buy from April 16 to July 31, 2023, will be eligible for a “limited benefit” of 15,000 RMB ($2,180).
Perhaps seeing the success behind its first electric sedan will jumpstart the company into selling more electric vehicles.
Toyota has struggled thus far in the transition to fully electric vehicles after a disappointing bZ4X rollout. This partnership with BYD is seemingly helping the automaker find its legs.
After newly elected CEO Koji Sato took over this month, many have high hopes that he can turn the ship around after previous leader Akio Toyoda repeatedly shunned going all in on EVs.
Although Toyota has no plans of bringing the bZ3 to the US, the Japanese automaker is planning a new three-row SUV as part of its strategy to bring ten new EV models to market by 2026.
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