Toyota’s new electric car has as much range as a Tesla Model 3, and costs less

Toyota gives more details on its future bZ3, an electric car rival of the Tesla Model 3 and designed in partnership with the Chinese giant BYD. First sold in China, it could land in Europe a little later.

Whether Toyota has never been a strong advocate of 100% electric, the Japanese firm is still forced to get started slowly. Because if the manufacturer thinks that the hybrid is sufficiently clean, this is not really the case of the major European authorities, which want to see this motorization disappear, in favor of all-electric. This is in particular why the brand unveiled its first 100% electric model in 2021, the bZ4X, the marketing of which had been stopped due to wheels coming off.

A new alternative: bZ3

This issue is now fixed, and Toyota continues to develop its electric range. While waiting for the production version of the bZ Compact SUV Concept unveiled at the Los Angeles show, the brand recently formalized its new bZ3, a sedan developed in partnership with BYDChinese giant specializing in batteries, having also tried to manufacture its own cars.

If the car was formalized last October, Toyota had not really given details on its technical sheet. Indeed, only its design had been shown, logically approaching that of the already well-known bZ4X. 4.72 meters long, or 3 centimeters longer than a Tesla Model 3, this newcomer to the range has a Cd of 0.218, better than its American rival. As a reminder, the Mercedes EQS is the most aerodynamic production car on the market, with a Cd of 0.20 all round.

On board, the presentation is logically modern, integrated with a large touch screen in a vertical position, associated with a digital handset. The bZ4X’s yoke steering wheel has not been renewed. There are hardly any physical buttons anymore, while all controls are now integrated into the infotainment system. A strategy that is not always a winner, as proven by Volkswagen, which should backtrack on this subject.

As the Chinese site explains It is the housewhich gives new information on this bZ3, this one has a rather generous wheelbase of 2.88 meters. What guarantee a beautiful space on board for the occupants. The trunk volume has not been detailed for the moment. As a reminder, that of the Model 3 is displayed at 542 liters.

From 25,580 euros… in China

As the Asian media explains, the sedan will be based on the e-TNGA platform from Toyota and will be powered by an electric motor available in two versions, 178 and 238 horsepower. The maximum speed will be limited to 160 km / h while the 0 to 100 km / h has not been communicated. The 49.92 and 65.28 kWh batteries will be supplied by Fudi, a subsidiary of BYD, which plans to build a plant in Europe.

What gives us a good reason to think that this bZ3 will be beautiful and sold well with us. The maximum range of the electric sedan is given for, respectively, 517 and 616 kilometers according to the Chinese CLTC cycle. Less strict than the European WLTP, it is generally 10 to 15% more optimistic. It will then be necessary to count a little more than 500 kilometers.

But what we learn alsothis is the price of this newcomer, of which the range will start from 189,800 yuan, or the equivalent of 25,580 euros. A very affordable price for the sedan, especially in the face of the 53,490 euros for the Tesla Model 3 with its 510 kilometers of autonomy. The most expensive version will start from 219,800 yuan, or around 29,623 euros.

Remember, however, that Chinese prices cannot be compared to prices in Europe. Indeed, as we have studied in a file, the price is much higher in Europe. If we take the example of the Model 3 Propulsion, it is sold for 265,900 yuan in China, the equivalent of 35,000 euros.

No marketing date in France has yet been communicated for this Toyota bZ3, which could very probably arrive next year. The brand is already working on the launch of several other electric models in the bZ range, including a compact, a C-segment crossover, a midsize sedan, but also a minivan as well as a C-segment SUV and a large SUV.

Electric car: that's it, Toyota finally believes in it and unveils its bZ3

At the moment, the Toyota bZ3 is only intended for the Chinese market. But it could arrive in Europe in early 2024 to overshadow a certain Tesla Model 3.
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