Akio Toyoda, President of Toyota Motor Corporation, met with Norbert Reithofer, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, to announce the decision Friday at the BMW Group headquarters in Munich.
"BMW and Toyota both want to make ever-better cars. We respect each other. And I think this is shown by our taking the next step only six months since the signing of our initial agreement," said Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota Motor Corporation in a news statement. "Toyota is strong in environment-friendly hybrids and fuel cells. On the other hand, I believe BMW's strength is in developing sports cars. I am excited to think of the cars that will result from this relationship."
A memorandum of understanding was signed between the two parties to collaborate in four fields: joint development of a fuel cell system, joint development of architecture and components for a future sports vehicle, collaboration on powertrain electrification and joint research and development on lightweight technologies.
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Reithofer said: “We aim to further strengthen our competitive position in sustainable future technologies. Toyota and the BMW Group share the same strategic vision of sustainable individual future mobility. Together we have a great opportunity to continue leading our industry through this transformation.”
Toyoda added: “BMW and Toyota both want to make ever-better cars. We respect each other. That is why we already can take the next step together... Toyota is strong in environment-friendly hybrids and fuel cells … I believe BMW's strength is developing sports cars. I get so excited thinking about the cars that will result from this relationship.”
Last year, the two automakers signed a contract, whereby the BMW Group will supply highly efficient 1.6-liter and 2.0-liter diesel engines to Toyota Motor Europe starting in 2014. The two are also working on making next-generation lithium-ion battery cells.