Toyota C+ pod ultra-compact EV launches in Japan

Toyota recently unveiled a new, extremely compact electric vehicle exclusively for the Japanese market. The tiny car is a two-seater and is called the C+ pod. Vehicles are available as of December 25 to corporations, local governments, and other organizations exploring new options to popularize electric cars. Toyota calls the launch a “limited launch,” indicating the vehicle isn’t available for the general consumer at this point.

Toyota notes that it plans to promote the establishment of systems that will help popularize electric vehicles, including developing new business models and conducting a full-scale launch to individual consumers by 2022. The vehicle is a small mobility option improving the per-person energy efficiency. It’s designed for short-distance daily use and is aimed at corporate users who visit customers regularly.

The C+ pod is designed to demonstrate new services specific to electric vehicles, including the Toyota Green Charge project. The project is a joint development with Chubu Electric Power Miraiz Co., Inc. It offers a single point of contact for corporations looking for support when constructing charging facilities or developing electricity plans for electric vehicles.

Toyota says the service will be jointly implemented in collaboration with Chubu Electric Power Miraiz, Kansai Electric Power Co., Inc., and TEPCO Energy Partner, Inc. other new services include electric vehicle sharing service combining tourist information with the Toyota Share car-sharing service.

Two grades of the car will be offered, including the X and G that appear to feature the same drivetrain. The X will sell for ¥1,650,000, with the G selling for ¥1,716,000. The driving range is up to 150 kilometers per charge. It’s unclear how long it takes for the battery to charge completely. The vehicle can provide up to 1500 watts of external power during disasters for up to 10 hours via an external power cable.