Back in July, Toyota officially confirmed that the electric Scion iQ will hit U.S. dealerships in 2012. A few weeks later, the Japanese automaker revealed that the electrified Scion iQ will be a fleet-only vehicle.

Now, there's word that Toyota will only ship 100 electric iQs from Japan to the U.S. in 2012. According to Integrity Exports, 2012 production for the electric iQ is going to be a mere 600 units, with 400 of the battery-powered minicars staying in Japan, leaving just 200 for the rest of the world.

Why only 100 for the U.S.? Well, Toyota's electrified minicar, with its estimated range of 50 miles, will face fierce competition from vehicles like the 73-mile rated Nissan Leaf and the 62-mile rated Mitsubishi i. Of course, the battery-powered Scion iQ's MSRP has not been announced, but we'd assume the vehicle's price and its limited range played some sort of role in Toyota's decision to severely limit U.S. deliveries.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 39 Comments
      Peter
      • 3 Years Ago
      is 100 the magic number needed for California regulations or is that all EV-1 era shenanigans, or is this just a prop for advertisements telling us how green they have become - can I interest you in a yaris ?
        Spec
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Peter
        Yeah, I suspect all 100 are headed for California.
      uncle_sam
      • 3 Years Ago
      It is planned for fleet use and car sharing like the car2go programme with the smart cars.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Japanese love the small cars which begs to question, why not more of e-iQ's? Similarly some areas of Europe would prefer to have more of these than the 100 left after Japan and United States. Non-luxury price (less than USD 29k - 7.5k - 2.5k) and a decent rapid charge (5-15 min or more) should lessen the 'range anxietyTM' of a 50-mile battery pack. Perhaps their supply lines are only hindered with 2 million Prii waiting to get plugged in.
      hopstf
      • 3 Years Ago
      Because of the actual currency exchange rate, I think.
      Marco Polo
      • 3 Years Ago
      Toyota don't want to sell the electric Scion iQ in North America. However,Toyota accepted an order for 64 cars from a US fleet operator, as this enables the electric Scion iQ , to be an 'export model' and attract Japanese benefits. Toyota is not interested in the relatively small numbers of Leaf sales. Toyota estimates that the Leaf is costing Renault heavily, and with rare earth supplies proving economically less reliable, Toyota is concentrating on securing the development hybrid technology, where Toyota already dominates very profitably. Toyota, are far more interested in remaining profitable and repairing the damage to it's Japanese manufacturing facilities, than indulging in some sort of invented competition with very small run EV production models. When the Leaf is selling 20,000 car per month, at a profit, then Toyota will become concerned. Toyota would be far more worried about a really good Cadillac hybrid sold as a rival to the Lexus GS hybrid range. The GS class is hugely profitable for Toyota, and having forced Mercedes, Jaguar,Audi and BMW to move over and make room, Lexus would not welcome a US rival, with the sort of world wide marketing network of GM.
        Schmart Guy
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        "and with rare earth supplies proving economically less reliable, Toyota is concentrating on securing the development hybrid technology, where Toyota already dominates very profitably." Considering the Toyota Synergy Drive uses two electric motors with rare earth magnets, this makes zero sense. Well at least you don't claim to be a genius.
          Schmart Guy
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Schmart Guy
          By genius, I was referring to your good friend Dan. Sorry, I wasn't too clear on that reference. I also thought you would understood the context of my comment, but I suppose I should have made myself more clear. Since there is no significant difference between the amount of rare earth magnets used in an electric hybrid vs a BEV , supply constraints would affect both equally. Also, any development in electric propulsion could be applied to both types of vehicles. So in my opinion, rare earth supply constraints wouldn't be a factor in Toyota focusing on hybrids over BEVs.
          Marco Polo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Schmart Guy
          Well, y'got me there! If I was a genius, I would have realised that there's always someone that has to have things spelt out very carefully. I had assumed you read the ABG article to provide the context. Toyota are a major importer of rare earth from the PRC. The PRC has been becoming a very unreliable exporter of rare earth, with threats to cut off supplies completely! Toyota is often forced to obtain supplies through a circuitous manner. As a result, Toyota is heavily investing in researching alternate elements to use in the construction of electric motors. Toyota, is also spending large sums financing the development other more reliable suppliers of rare earths, including dredging the ocean floor. This is pretty tricky, as the PRC could retaliate by restricting Toyota's other trading concessions in the PRC. I hope that may be of some assistance?
          Marco Polo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Schmart Guy
          Well, y'got me there! If I was a genius, I would have realised that there's always someone that has to have things spelt out very carefully. I had assumed you read the ABG article to provide the context. Toyota are a major importer of rare earth from the PRC. The PRC has been becoming a very unreliable exporter of rare earth, with threats to cut off supplies completely! Toyota is often forced to obtain supplies through a circuitous manner. As a result, Toyota is heavily investing in researching alternate elements to use in the construction of electric motors. Toyota, is also spending large sums financing the development other more reliable suppliers of rare earths, including dredging the ocean floor. This is pretty tricky, as the PRC could retaliate by restricting Toyota's other trading concessions in the PRC. I hope that may be of some assistance?
        usbseawolf2000
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        I think Toyota is going to test it with fleet through a few generations before selling it to the public. They did the same with Prius PHV starting in 2007.
      uncle_sam
      • 3 Years Ago
      Car2 Go is a programme by MERCEDES. With modern IT they work very well meanwhile. Also the deutsche bahn (railway) offers small cars with the flinkster subsidiary. So the toyota wants to do the same and put it against the car2 go. But with a small battery it should be rather cheap and 90% of my trips are smaller than 50 miles. Also you take less time to charge it. Imagine it with CHADEMO. 80% in 5-10 minutes.
        hopstf
        • 3 Years Ago
        @uncle_sam
        Car sharing systems existed much before Car2 go.
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 3 Years Ago
      Only 100? ridiculous.. With 50 miles of range, this car should hover around the low $20k mark. I think there are going to be lots of young urbanites who want a car like this.. why limit the sale? CARB/CAFE play?
        Nick
        • 3 Years Ago
        @2 Wheeled Menace
        They're prolly still losing money on each, that's why.
          hopstf
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Nick
          More than Pegeot, Citroen or Toyota, and maybe more than Honda, Renault-Nissan(-Dacia) relocates in the country where labor cost is cheaper.
          2 Wheeled Menace
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Nick
          That's because they don't have the balls to mass produce it like Nissan is.
      Nick From Montreal
      • 3 Years Ago
      Designed to disappoint. Priced to fail. Toyota is trying their best to loose the EV race to Nissan. Well, at least they invested in Tesla and providing them with some revenue until Model S.
        usbseawolf2000
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Nick From Montreal
        Toyota won't sell an EV with the battery that last only 5 years.
      Spec
      • 3 Years Ago
      C'mon Toyota. We know you can do better than that. You are not even trying. Nissan is embarrassing you.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Send them to places like Honolulu where people drive less than 12 miles a day.
      Jelly
      • 3 Years Ago
      Toyota Green PR stunt. Battery packs on the Nissan Leaf cost $18,000 to replace, that would keep my wifes diesel Pug going with free diesel for the next 400,000 miles, its already got 215,000 on the clock and only just run in the engine which is running sweet as a nut.. My wifes Pug battery cost about $28 to buy 5 years ago.
        Nick
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Jelly
        So? Not everyone buys a car based on economics. Do you think BMW would sell any cars if it was ONLY about the money? Some people want to get off oil, and are willing to pay more for just that. What don't you get about it?
          miles
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Nick
          Yeah, but many others (big majority I bet) can't afford to (or just won't) spend the extra money just to be green in their vehicle. I'm eagerly awaiting the change to save money on a green vehicle, because once it costs me less, I'm all in...
          Marco Polo
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Nick
          @Nick Well said!
        usbseawolf2000
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Jelly
        I wish your children free of cancer by growing up with Diesel.
        Spec
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Jelly
        Jelly is spewing the debunked garbage again with the "Battery packs on the Nissan Leaf cost $18,000 to replace". That is bogus claptrap. That is like saying your current ICE car would cost like 3 times as much if you were to buy every individual part of the auto parts store and assemble it yourself (which is completely true). Thus your current car sucks! The question you can't answer is how much will that diesel for your wife's pug cost 10 years from now? I can assure you that it will be MUCH MUCH more than the electricity needed to fuel an EV. It is already much more but it could end being 10X more by then.
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Spec
          Spec: What's bogus about Jelly's numbers? Mark Perry, Nissan's chief product planner for North America, told the WSJ in May that the actual battery cost is a little less than $750 per kilowatt hour, bringing the total to just below $18,000. That's NISSAN'S COST. More than half the SELL PRICE of the car is the battery. Period. BEVs may work OK, but any version that is safe and marginally practical is too expensive with gas under $8-10/gal US.
        Chu
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Jelly
        Electric/hybrid cars don't need battery replacement at all. Got that? Stop spreading complete BS. This makes you even more stupid.
        2 Wheeled Menace
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Jelly
        Yeah but your 'pug' is still diesel. it still blows smoke and still runs on a finite resource. Electric battery costs keep going down and electricity is cheap compared to oil.
      • 3 Years Ago
      100 total, and only to fleets HAHAHAHAHAAAAAAA!!!!! Nissan is selling that many Leafs, to Joe-Blow American every week. Nissan will be selling that many a day by the end of 2012.
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