Toyota Introduces Car Solar Power

TOKYO – The Toyota Motor Corporation recently revealed their new project to the public, where they plan to harness car solar power. They secretly started developing the solar power car in an effort to improve its struggling business.

However, according to The Nikkei newspaper, it will be years before the vehicle hits the market. At the moment Toyota is developing an electric car that gets only some of its power from solar panels attached to the vehicle, and can also be recharged at home. Later they plan to release a model operating solely on car solar power.

The car solar power model is part of Toyota’s efforts to expand during a global economic crisis. It appears their first semi-solar powered car idea was spurred on by Greg Johanson, owner of Solar Electric Vehicles, who added a solar roof to his hybrid Toyota Prius just over a year ago.

Here is a video on the solar powered Prius:

This December Toyota shocked Japan after announcing its first operating loss in seven decades. This was caused by the global slump, especially in the American market, and the strengthening Yen.

Despite this, with Toyota being one of the leaders in green technology, its executives stressed that they have no intention on cutting back on environmental research and development.

The leading Japanese automaker has already started powering some of its Tsutsumi plant in central Japan on solar electricity. The roof solar panels add up in size to about 3 football fields and generate enough energy to power 500 households, according to Toyota. This reduces their carbon footprint by 740 tons per year, which is equivalent to burning 1,500 barrels of crude oil.

With its partner in developing and producing hybrid batteries, Panasonic, taking over Japanese rival Sanyo – a leader in solar energy – early next year, Toyota is bound to gain expertise in solar energy.  This will speed up development on its car solar power project, and who knows – perhaps we may see the first commercial solar powered car sooner than expected.

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Originally posted 2009-01-07 13:49:15.


  1. Posted January 27, 2009 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

    Just wanted to add that I love Toyota cars and am excited to read on your
    blog about a solar powered car that’s in the works. When will the U.S.
    auto industry wake up and start making quality worth the money you
    pay for them automobiles?

  2. Posted January 28, 2009 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

    Yes. We have a feeling “green energy” will be used more widely, now that we have a more open-minded administration.

    Just give it a few years…

One Trackback

  1. By on April 3, 2009 at 9:40 am

    Toyota Introduces Car Solar Power…

    Toyota, Tokyo’s largest automobile manufacturer, recently revealed their latest innovation – a solar power car for the masses….

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