1. Wide of a joint news conference by Toyota Motor Corp. and BMW management
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Klaus Draeger, Member of BMW AG, development board of management:
"In future, the BMW group, and Toyota Motor Corporation, will work together in what is designed to be a long term technological partnership. By carrying out basic research together, we want to speed up the development of battery cell technologies."
3. Wide of news conference
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Takeshi Uchiyamada, Executive Vice President and Representative Director of Toyota Motor Corp:
"And we at Toyota are exploring possibilities across a full range of technologies. The battery technology that we will develop with BMW will be the core technology for both reducing and replacing petroleum fuel."
Auto giants Toyota and BMW said on Thursday they had agreed to collaborate on research for cleaner, next-generation batteries, underlining the growing push in the industry for green technology.
The agreement brings together Toyota Motor Corp., Japan's No. 1 carmaker and a leader in petrol-electric hybrids, and BMW AG of Germany, a European maker that has a strong luxury brand image in both Japan and Europe.
"In future, the BMW group, and Toyota Motor Corporation, will work together in what is designed to be a long term technological partnership," Klaus Draeger, Member of BMW AG, development board of management said.
The two automakers will also work on improving lithium-ion battery technology, typically used in batteries for electronic gadgets and relatively new to autos.
Toyota has struggled to find a good lithium-ion battery for its green cars and is using technology from Japanese electronics maker Sanyo Electric Co. in its latest plug-in hybrid, for which Toyota has recently started taking orders.
Toyota had worked with Panasonic Corp. on a battery before the electronics maker acquired Sanyo, partly to get better lithium-ion technology.
"And we at Toyota are exploring possibilities across a full range of technologies. The battery technology that we will develop with BMW will be the core technology for both reducing and replacing petroleum fuel," Toyota Executive Vice President Takeshi Uchiyamada told reporters at a Tokyo news conference.
Toyota and BMW have been engaged in extended discussions on technology and plan to collaborate on other medium-term and long-term projects, he said.
BMW will also begin supplying "clean" diesel engines to Toyota in 2014 for models for the European market.
Diesel engines for passenger cars are huge in Europe but have yet to take off in the U.S. or Japan, the two major markets where Toyota is strong.
Toyota does not have enough clean diesel engines for its European offerings.
Under their agreement, BMW is supplying 1.6 litre and 2.0 litre fuel-efficient diesel engines for Toyota.
They declined to give details on models.
The announcement was timed with the Tokyo Motor Show, which opens to the public on Saturday.