Toyota reveals BZ4X EV with Tesla-style yoke steering wheel

The Toyota’s first electric vehicle is gearing up for launch next year, but the automaker has already revealed numerous details about the production version of the new electric SUV BZ4X. They include some surprises, such as the introduction of a steer-by-wire system married to a Tesla-style yoke. For Toyota, known for being a conservative automaker, this is quite shocking.

It is also known to offer a estimated range of 300 miles in the WLTP cycle, which comes from a 71.40 kilowatt-hour battery. It doesn’t matter whether drivers choose front-wheel drive or an all-wheel drive system borrowed from partner Subaru, the battery remains the same. If you choose FWD the battery supplies power for 201 horsepower. AWD models generate 214 hp.

Toyota BZ4X.
Toyota BZ4X. / Photo: Courtesy Toyota.

Reliable electric battery

When it comes time to plug in the BZ4X for a fee, Toyota said the SUV accepts rates up to 150 kilowatts. That will fill the battery in just 30 minutes for an 80% charge. All these figures may seem small, but The automaker is aiming for long-term reliability with this electric powertrain. Toyota specifically said that the onboard battery should maintain 90% of its usable capacity after a decade of driving 15,000 per year. Battery degradation can be a real thing, and it’s clear Toyota wants to make sure future customers don’t see their usable range plummet.

Tesla type steering wheel

Now, let’s talk about that flyer. The Futuristic Yoke Will Launch With The BZ4X In China Just To Get Started, when Toyota begins production next year. The yoke will be paired with a new steer-by-wire system, which means there is no mechanical connection between the tires on the pavement and the wheel with which the driver controls them. A yoke isn’t exactly the easiest way to maneuver, but Toyota said this system creates a 150-degree lock-to-lock. It should ensure that drivers do not need to change their grip while driving, especially in tight areas such as parking lots. And with the wired system, various driving modes can change the feel of the steering. Finally, without a steering column, the engineers and designers opened up more legroom.

Toyota BZ4X
Toyota BZ4X. / Photo: Courtesy Toyota.

It is not yet known if the Yugo will be available in the United States.

Toyota declined to comment on whether we’ll see this yoke-style wheel for the United States. We’ll have to wait and see. The production information provided also shows the car with a standard steering wheel destined for other parts of the world, so it may be that the United States simply adhere to the good circular wheel. Toyota would certainly have to talk to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to make sure the steer-by-wire system is adequate for US regulations.

What other amenities will the BZ4X have?

Other highlights of the BZ4X production SUV include a optional sunroof for some countries, wireless software updates, Toyota Safety Sense driver assistance systems and the modern instrument panel that maximizes visibility for drivers.

Toyota BZ4X.
Toyota BZ4X. / Photo: Courtesy Toyota.

Production of the SUV will take place in Japan and China. The United States should see the first BZ4X models in mid-2022. By then, the Volkswagen ID.4, Ford Mustang Mach-E, Tesla Model Y and others will gain a new rival. And the Subaru version of this SUV, the Solterra, should also launch next year.

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