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Toyota, Geely Eye Partnership on Hybrid Cars

Toyota Motor Corp. is exploring potential partnerships with China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. on electric-hybrid vehicle technology, according to media reports.
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Toyota Motor Corp. is exploring potential partnerships with China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. on electric-hybrid vehicle technology, according to media reports.

Toyota confirms to Reuters that the two carmakers are “communicating with each other,” without elaborating. Geely declines to comment.

One source tells the news agency the talks involve a Chinese battery supplier that both carmakers have worked with separately. Reuters says the deal hasn’t been finalized, but initial Chinese media reports suggest an agreement could be announced soon.

Toyota said earlier this year that it plans to launch 10 electrified vehicles in China by 2020. The first of the models, plug-in hybrid versions of the Corolla and Levin sedans, are due in 2019. To support the vehicles, Toyota plans to increase production of nickel-metal hydride battery modules at two existing Chinese factories.

Geely has said it intends to introduce 30 “new-energy” hybrid and all-electric vehicles in China by 2020. Earlier this year the carmaker unveiled mild- and plug-in hybrid versions of its Boroui GE sports sedan.

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