Toyota finally launches its first EV in Australia to fend off Tesla’s top-selling Model Y

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Toyota finally launches its first EV in Australia to fend off Tesla’s top-selling Model Y


After an 18-month delay, Toyota finally launched its first electric car, the bZ4X, in Australia. Toyota looks to defend its title as the best-selling car brand in the country as EV leaders like Tesla are gaining market share.

Toyota launched the bZ4X electric SUV, its first EV in Australia, starting at $66,000 (plus on-road costs).

The electric SUV can be ordered as a FWD or AWD model. Toyota’s base FWD model starts at $66,000 with 332 mi (535 km) NEDC range, or 271 mi (436 km), according to WLTP standards.

Starting at $74,900, the AWD variant includes a second motor with up to 214 hp (160 kW). It includes up to 301 miles (485 km) NEDC range or 255 mi (411 km) WLTP.

Toyota says the electric SUV can charge from 10% to 80% in about 30 minutes with up to 150 kW DC charging.

The electric SUV includes a multi-instrument display, mimicking a head-up display. A 12.3″ infotainment is Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatible.

Toyota-first-EV-Australia
Toyota bZ4X (Source: Toyota Australia)

Toyota is offering a limited-time “Fully Charged Offer” with a 3-year full-service lease. The deal bundles service and maintenance costs, registration fees, CTP, tire replacements, Toyota Insurance, and Roadside Assist into one monthly payment.

The automaker is also offering a free JET charge 7 kW ABB home charger and Toyota Connected services for three years.

Toyota launches first EV in Australia to fend off Tesla

Toyota’s base bZ4X is still $600 more expensive than Tesla’s Model Y RWD. However, with $1,400 in shipping and another $400 for order fees, Toyota’s EV just undercuts Tesla’s Model Y, the best-selling EV in the nation.

Electric Vehicle Starting Price
(Australia)
Range
(WLTP)
Toyota bZ4X FWD $66,000 271 mi (436 km)
Toyota bZ4X AWD $74,900 255 mi (411 km)
Tesla Model Y RWD $65,400 283 mi (455 km)
Tesla Model Y AWD Long Range $78,400 331 mi (533 km)
Tesla Model Y AWD Performance $91,400 319 mi (514 km)
Tesla Model Y vs Toyota bZ4X in Australia

The bZ4X is $3,500 less than the Tesla Model Y AWD model. It’s also over $7,500 more expensive than the Toyota RAV4 hybrid.

Tesla sold roughly 28,800 Model Ys in Australia last year. Toyota handed over about 29,600 RAV4s.

Tesla-Model-Y
The 2024 Model Y
(Source: Tesla)

With 283 mi (455 km) WLTP range, Tesla’s Model Y RWD tops the Toyota bZ4X FWD at 255 mi (411 km).

Tesla’s Model Y Long Range offers up to 331 mi (533 km) WLTP range, easily topping Toyota’s first EV in Australia. Toyota said it only expects to deliver about 1,500 EVs in Australia this year, down from several thousand initially.

Electrek’s Take

Toyota’s Australia VP of sales, marketing, and franchise operations, Sean Hanley, told journalists in October that “Right now, hybrid-electric vehicles are a better fit than BEVs for most consumers.” Hanley added, “BEVs make sense in places like Norway,” but “Australia is not Europe.”

Despite the comments, Tesla’s Model Y is proving that theory wrong. The Model Y was the sixth best-selling vehicle (gas or electric) in 2023, topping Toyota’s Landcruiser and the Mitsubishi Outlander.

With a new National EV Strategy, Australia aims to boost EV adoption with affordable models, new dedicated resources, and infrastructure to enable rapid adoption.

As more charging stations roll out and new models hit the market, EV adoption is expected to continue climbing in Australia.

Can Toyota keep up as EV leaders like Tesla continue stealing market share? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Source: Drive

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