Toyota Motor

InfluenceMap Score
D
Performance Band
48%
Organisation Score
48%
Relationship Score
Sector:
Automobiles
Head​quarters:
Toyota City, Japan
Brands and Associated Companies:
Hino Motors , Daihatsu Motor
Official Web Site:
Wikipedia:

Climate Lobbying Overview: Toyota is actively engaged with a variety of climate policy streams globally. Despite positive top-line messaging on climate, the company in 2020-22 has consistently opposed regulatory efforts to increase the stringency of emissions and fuel economy standards for vehicles across various regions globally. Furthermore, despite support for limited measures to decarbonize the transport sector, Toyota has been highly negative on policy mandating the electrification of the automotive sector, promoting an extended role for hybrid vehicles and opposing the long-term phase-out of internal combustion engine (ICE)-powered vehicles.

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: Toyota’s top-line messaging on climate change is broadly positive and largely focused on its 2050 Environmental Challenge commitments. The company expressed support for the need to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions on its website in 2021 although it is unclear whether it supports economy-wide emissions reductions in line with IPCC recommendations. At a press conference held in April 2021, Toyota’s president, Akio Toyoda, appeared to show broad support for Japan’s long-term climate neutrality targets, while suggesting that Japan needs an expansion/mix of technology options for GHG reduction. Furthermore, Toyota’s April 2021 climate neutrality statement states support for the Paris Agreement. At a September 2021 press conference, Toyota’s President emphasized competitive disadvantage concerns for Japan around climate regulation, appearing to support less ambitious action. In a September 2021 UK consultation response, Toyota stated support for the UK's 2050 net-zero target, though with uncertainty as to whether it supports near-term action to achieve this goal. More positively, in an August 2022 Bloomberg statement, Toyota stated that it “continues to share the vision” of GHG reduction and carbon neutrality goals with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the state of California.

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: Toyota has actively engaged with policymakers on various climate-related regulations. In the United States, in a September 2021 consultation response, Toyota stated support for the mid-range proposal for 2023-26 federal GHG emissions standards for vehicles, in between Trump and Obama-era standards, while opposing the proposed high-range standards. It also advocated for numerous flexibilities to weaken the stringency of the regulation. Moreover, Toyota was part of a group of companies which wrote a letter to President Donald Trump in June 2019 proposing a weakening of CAFE and GHG standards for vehicles in the US, and later in 2019 intervened in a legal case to support the removal of California's ability to set its own GHG emissions standards under the state’s Clean Air Act waiver. As of February 2021, however, Toyota has withdrawn from this litigation, and in August 2022, Bloomberg reported that Toyota had announced support for California’s authority to set its own GHG emissions standards under the Clean Air Act.

In a March 2021 Toyota consultation response to New Zealand’s climate action plan, Toyota appeared to oppose the proposed 105g CO2/km emissions standards for light-duty vehicles, advocating for a significantly less stringent 130g CO2/km target, while supporting a New Zealand Emissions Trading System for road transport at the expense of more stringent emissions regulations. Similarly, in a November 2021 consultation response, Toyota appeared to advocate to repeal proposed higher 2026 and 2027 CO2 targets for light-duty vehicles in New Zealand.

Positioning on Energy Transition: Toyota in 2020-22 appears to have consistently advocated for a long-term role for ICE-powered hybrid vehicles over battery electric vehicles at a global level and strongly opposed ICE phase-out and ZEV mandate policies. In Japan, a June 2022 Reuters article stated that Toyota CEO, Akio Toyoda, appears to have successfully pressured the Japanese government to promote hybrids over pure battery electric vehicles (BEVs) in Japan's annual economic policy roadmap. According to a December 2021 Sentaku magazine report, Toyota has disseminated books criticizing BEVs to Japanese media and the government, as well as organizing briefing sessions for the Japanese media to discourage reporters from writing positively about BEVs, according to a November 2021 Weekly Economist article. A July 2021 statement from Toyota’s CEO, Akio Toyoda, further appeared to support a long-term role for ICE-powered vehicles over battery electric vehicles. In March 2021 testimony to Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), Toyota stated opposition to introducing a ZEV mandate in Japan. While announcing a new 2030-35 BEV strategy in December 2021, Toyota maintained its position that different national energy situations require “a variety of carbon neutral-options”, and advocated for a continued role of ICE technology in global markets.

Toyota has consistently opposed national policies to phase out internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles globally. In the US, a Toyota US blog post from July 2021 appeared to oppose specific measures to electrify transportation, including the phase-out of ICE powered vehicles and ZEV mandates. In Japan, at an April 2021 press conference, Toyota CEO, Akio Toyoda, appeared unsupportive of Japanese phase-out dates for gasoline or diesel-powered vehicles. In Europe, a February 2022 Nikkei article reported that in July 2021, weeks after the EU announced a 2035 effective phase-out date for ICE vehicles, Toyota directly asked France's President Macron in a private meeting to prolong the sale of ICE-powered hybrid vehicles in the EU. In the UK, a Times report in April 2022 stated that Toyota had urged the UK's Transport Secretary to weaken its "green" policies mandating a rapid switch to BEVs, warning that it may cease its UK operations. A September 2021 UK Toyota consultation response, found via FOI request, further called on the UK government to weaken its 2035 ICE phase-out policy by including sales of mild, full and plug-in hybrids from 2030-35, alongside opposing a ZEV mandate. Similarly, in New Zealand (NZ), both a March 2021 op-ed from the Toyota NZ chief executive and a Toyota consultation response, opposed a recommended 2035 ban on new petrol and diesel car sales. At a global level, in November 2021, Toyota did not sign a global pledge made at COP26 to phase out ICE-powered vehicles in leading markets by 2035 and globally by 2040. A spokesperson told Reuters that it did not commit to the pledge as in "many areas of the world ... an environment suitable for promoting full zero emission transport has not yet been established".

In the US, at the state level, a May 2022 consultation responses indicated that Toyota appeared to oppose California's proposed Advanced Clean Cars II regulation, which would require an increasing percentage of new light-duty electric vehicle sales each year until a 100% ZEV mandate in 2035, advocating for numerous flexibilities to weaken the rule’s stringency. At the federal level, in March 2021, Toyota provided evidence to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, emphasizing the difficulties of electrifying road transportation in the US and advocating for policymakers to widen their policy decarbonization focus beyond BEVs to include hybrid vehicles. an August 2021 Toyota press statement appeared supportive of a newly proposed voluntary US 40-50% electric vehicle sales target (including hybrids) by 2030. However, in August 2022, Forbes reported that a US Toyota executive appeared to suggest it was unlikely that automakers would be able to meet the 40-50% target as the "rhetoric" around electric vehicles is way out ahead of consumer demand. Regarding US purchase incentives, in September 2021, Toyota argued in a letter sent to the US House Ways and Means Subcommittee that new EV incentives unfairly prioritized union-built vehicles, while appearing to support a general US EV tax credit. In June 2022, Toyota further signed a joint letter to US congressional leaders supporting a US electric vehicle tax credit, and the removal of an OEM cap for such a credit.

Regarding the energy mix in Japan, while comments from Toyota’s CEO, Akio Toyoda, at a March 2021 JAMA press conference appeared supportive of measures to promote renewables and decarbonize Japan’s energy sector, additional communications from Toyoda in September 2021 emphasized the costs of a renewable energy transition in Japan. Similarly, in a December 2021 interview, Akio Toyoda stressed that promoting electric vehicles should depend on the energy situation in each global region, emphasizing the high emissions of Japan’s power sector, and suggesting BEVs in Japan would produce high carbon emissions. In contrast, Toyota's 2021 'Public Policy' disclosure, stated that "Toyota supports the Japanese government’s new 2030 energy mix plan, where renewable energy is to be the country's main power source in 2030", including a doubling of Japan's renewable energy in the next ten years.

Industry Association Governance: Toyota appears to have mixed transparency over its indirect influence through industry associations. In December 2021, Toyota published its first review of its industry association memberships and their alignment on climate change. The company did not identify any cases of material misalignment. Toyota retains high-level positions in several regressive trade associations. These include Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA), where Toyota President Akio Toyoda is chairman, Keidanren, where Toyota Vice Chairman Shigeru Hayakawa is Vice Chair of the Board of Councilors, the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA), where Toyota Europe Chairman Didier Leroy is a board member, and Alliance for Automotive Innovation where a Toyota executive is chair of the board in 2021. Toyota subsidiaries also retain memberships to several other associations, including the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) in the US, Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) in the UK, and the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) in India.

A detailed assessment of the company's corporate review on climate policy engagement can be found on InfluenceMap's CA100+ Investor Hub here.

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Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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70%
 
70%
 
43%
 
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54%
 
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29%
 
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22%
 
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76%
 
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54%
 
54%
 
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66%
 
66%
 
54%
 
54%
 
36%
 
36%
 
71%
 
71%

How to Read our Relationship Score Map

In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.