Toyota's coming baby bZ Compact SUV gets a teaser vid on X



At the LA Auto Show last November, Toyota revealed a bZ Compact SUV concept without saying much about it. All we could surmise was that it was probably a look at an upcoming model to fit beneath the bZ4X. Two months later, spy photographers caught the new electric ride cavorting under camouflage. Now Toyota Japan has put a teaser vid on X promoting the next in line for the Beyond Zero lineup, many suspecting it could get the name bZ3, although the carmaker’s already introduced a bZ3 sedan to the Chinese market.

It appears from this snippet that the automaker’s going big on the blue dot and “Beyond Zero” emblems. Appearing first on the 2023 Prius, Toyota explained during the reveal of the iconic hybrid that the identifiers represents “a global effort to achieve carbon neutrality in our products, manufacturing and beyond.” On top of that and as per Google Translate, the caption on the X post explains, “The present we live in is also the future in which the next generation will live. This badge from the Prius conveys the message that we value the happiness of people living on earth and want to pass it on to the next generation. Towards a future beyond zero. BEYOND ZERO.”

We’re still waiting to find out how the production vehicle will express all of this. Apart from the crossover’s size (slightly bigger than a Corolla Cross but smaller than a RAV4) and what it’s probably going to look like, we really don’t know much about this new baby EV. Toyota has managed to keep the concept’s powertrain a secret a year on from the debut. For context, though, the larger bZ4X comes with a 150-kilowatt (201 horsepower) motor in FWD form, it’s possible this smaller bZ variant comes in under that figure. The bz4X’s all-wheel-drive model packs a pair of 80-kW (107 hp) motors — one on each axle.  

The concept’s interior was angular and minimalist, with tablet-style screens for the instruments and infotainment. A neat wraparound panel stretched from the leading edges of the dash around the doors. Also present was a steering yoke, which wouldn’t be out of the question, as Toyota is introducing a yoke on the Lexus RZ electric car. Toyota also noted that the seats contain plant-based materials and there’s an A.I. assistant named “Yui” to handle voice commands, perhaps part of the tech suite that one automaker exec said would deliver features “never before seen in Toyota model.”

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