Both at the forefront of ecology, the two manufacturers have signed a memorandum of understanding for a mid-to-long-term research collaboration in environment-friendly technologies.
This cooperation will particularly involve the research on lithium-ion batteries, a crucial domain in the coming years with the rise of hybrid cars and the advent of a market for electric cars.
According to the agreement, by 2014 BMW will supply 1.6 liter and 2.0 liter diesel engines and Toyota, which has cut 33 million tones of CO2 emissions thanks to 3.4 million hybrid vehicles sold worldwide, will offer access to its hybrid technology instead.
Norbert Reithofer, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, said: ” Toyota is the leading provider of environment-friendly series technology in the volume segment and the BMW Group is the most innovative and sustainable manufacturer of premium automobiles. We are now joining forces to further develop environment-friendly technologies and to expand our innovation leadership in each of our segments. Supplying Toyota with our fuel efficient and dynamic diesel engines represents another important step in the planned expansion of our sales activities for engines and powertrain system.”
Toyota President Akio Toyoda said: “It is a great joy and a thrill to enter into this mid-to-long-term collaborative relationship with BMW, a company with its own culture and history from its many years of car manufacturing in Europe , and a company that makes cars that are fun to drive. In the spirit of contributing to furthering the development of the auto industry and society, both companies will bring their wide-ranging knowledge-starting with that concerning environmental technologies-to the table and make ever-better cars.”
BMW and Toyota have already announced the development of a common model.