2023 Toyota bZ4X Preview

Discussion in 'In the News' started by xcel, Nov 30, 2021.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    [​IMG] Toyota’s legendary reliability may not be enough to move their first internally designed BEV off lots.

    Wayne Gerdes – CleanMPG – Nov. 29, 2021

    2023 Toyota bz4X


    The intro was this. ;)

    Toyota’s all-electric bZ4X made its U.S. debut representing the OEMs first of a series of BEVs to be introduced under the global “Toyota bZ” (Beyond Zero) brand umbrella. With availability scheduled for mid-2022, the bZ4X will have a manufacturer-estimated range of up to 250 miles for XLE front-wheel drive models and as little as 225-miles for the AWD variants. That “elephant in the room” - far less than 300 and 400-mile - short range announcement is the same release that has plagued any number of full model lineup OEMs with their own initial releases when trying to do battle against the likes of the well-established 300 to 400-mile range Tesla’s and the hard charging newcomer called Lucid with its own 400 to 500+ mile range sedan only offering, all available today.

    The all-new bZ4X joins an extensive lineup of Toyota Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid (Prius and RAV4 Prime) vehicles that accounts for more than 24% of Toyota’s total U.S. sales volume. By 2050, Toyota envisions a future in which carbon neutrality is standard no matter the Toyota drivetrain chosen.

    2023 Toyota bZ4X

    The all-new, all-electric SUV looks like a cross between the RAV4 and Venza Hybrid with an all-electric front fascia. Out back, the Venza/RXh like rear hatch slope along with combination lamps fits a modern vehicle appearance with one caveat. The rear lamps housing is far to large for a sleek modern appearance. AKA, 4th gen Prius upright rear lamps through 2019 before they toned them down with a horizontal layout.

    [​IMG]
    Decent amount of cargo volume albeit the steeply raked rear hatch will reduce practical volume and use somewhat.​

    The instrument panel and central display are moved up a few inches providing an improved driver’s eyes on the road layout. Soundproofing glass and wind-noise reduction features create a quiet refuge from the world outside although we were not allowed to drive the static prototype vehicle(s) onsite.

    The bZ4X includes a panoramic roof while passengers are offered RAV4 like legroom, front and rear. USB A and C ports in convenient locations.

    2023 Toyota bZ4X Front to Rear Seat Legroom

    [​IMG]
    The reflective black wheel well cladding and front wheel up into the headlamps looks a little cartoonish.​

    Built on the Toyota BEV e-TNGA platform, the bZ4X includes a 71.4/72.8 kWh (FWD/RWD) Li-Ion pack placed flat under the floor. A new AWD system called X-MODE with Grip-Control is said to provide a driving experience suited for everything from daily driving to light off-roading. Toyota’s pure off-road capabilities have never been noteworthy but for the day-to-day winter season weather, they have proved their worth time and time again.

    To maximize energy-saving and cruising range in winter settings, the following systems and equipment were adopted to reduce consumption:
    • Heat pump system for both heating and air-conditioning
    • Seat and steering wheel heaters
    • Front-seat radiant foot-and-leg heater (first for Toyota)
    Toyota may have targeted to small a battery providing to short of range but that did not stop their desire to provide traction battery longevity providing many years of satisfied ownership. The company’s design is targeting a battery capacity retention of 90% after 10 years of ownership.

    [​IMG]
    No frunk.​

    Toyota also designed in a non-conductive coolant flowing through separated channels to maintain optimal battery temperature. The battery pack housing is designed to withstand a collision from any angle due to its frame and cross-bracing design.

    The real highlight of the bZ4X is it will be the first Toyota to include the latest Toyota Safety Sense package (TSS 3.0). This system has been improved by expanding the detection range of the millimeter wave radar and monocular camera. Toyota has enhanced the performance of each function and added new functions to assist in normal driving conditions. For example, the Pre-collision system has been improved to offer Low-Light Cyclist Detection, Daytime Motorcyclist Detection and Guardrail Detection. Also, lane recognition is enhanced to add improved functionality while in Lane Tracing Assist mode.

    bZ4X Infotainment

    The bz4X arrives with navigation that uses map information from the cloud to obtain traffic information and parking space availability in real time. Toyota’s own embedded NAVI solutions have never impressed me and I am not sure this one will either. Fortunately, Toyota’s latest head units now support wireless AA and ACP which will remove any working impediment.

    bZ4X Front Interior Layout

    [​IMG]
    The screens were bright, glare proof, and the HMI was quick to react.​

    Digital key gives owners the ability to lock, unlock and start the vehicle with a tap of a smartphone and can be handed over between smartphones, making it easy for family and friends to borrow and lend vehicles remotely. Other features of the trial subscription include BEV specialized services such as charging station info, driving support info and vehicle driving range.

    Over-the-air (OTA = wireless) software updates make it possible for Toyota Safety Sense and the multimedia system without needing to visit a dealership.

    bZ4X Early Assessment

    All-in and with the inability to actually get behind the wheel for a drive, that 250-miles of stated range in FWD configuration is a tough spec to swallow when competitors are running at 300+ miles from similar CUV form factors out today. Rumor is the price should be in the $37k+ range for the FWD variant and the low $40s for the AWD trims. That and Toyota's long term reliability is surely a given which may help. At least these two attributes are competitive starting points.

    Regarding the exterior styling, the general public’s acceptance will have more to say about this then I ever will but I am not expecting large sales volumes out of the gate.
     
    TheFordFamily likes this.
  2. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    I just received an invite to the short lead in late April. My fingers are crossed for a bit more range and a bit more detail on the pricing. I want to see Toyota's first true foray into the EV market to be a success and the pre-release speculation is not up to that standard imho.

    2023 Toyota bZ4X

    [​IMG]

    Wayne
     
  3. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    Do you think this will be more , or less efficient than the RAV4 Prime ?
     
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  4. Trollbait

    Trollbait Well-Known Member

    I hope more. The Prius Prime is the only PHEV that compares to the most efficient BEVs. The others all seem to pay in efficiency for having a back up engine. If thebZ4X is rated below 100mpge, it would be an engineering failure for Toyota.
     
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  5. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    I hope so. I'm more likely tp buy a PHEV than a BEV. I have experience driving a RAV4 Hybrid and I like that a lot.
    The Prime can only be better. Well , more expensive , too.
     
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  6. thunderstruck

    thunderstruck Super Moderator

    I'm in the same camp as Edwin. I'd rather have a PHEV after 2 weeks of power outages in Texas last year, and rolling blackouts in California. Tesla's and such don't work so good if there is no electric. Unfortunately there is literally one new Prius within 100 miles of me and it's not outfitted the way I want. I finally turned 18K miles on my 2019 GTI bought in December of that year so it's not like I drive a whole lot. I'd still like the comfort of knowing I can survive gas shortages.
     
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  7. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    The Prius Prime is a true unicorn , especially in the most basic version.

    Otherwise ,I'd probably buy one.

    As it stands.......... my 2015 Prius has 131K miles and runs perfectly.
    I can wait.
     
    xcel likes this.
  8. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    If you're willing to drive a little (600-700 miles?), there are some LE trim in NY. under $30k list; $1500 cash from Toyota on top of whatever tax incentives you can get. I'm assuming the NY state, military and college grad rebates do you no good.
     
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  9. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    I've wanted a RAV4 Prime the moment they were announced, but it was not to be with limited availability even in Massachusetts and now, the over list price fever that too many car dealerships seem to have caught. To add salt to the wound, I just saw a news feed post that said some people are on their 2nd RAV4 Prime since they liked the first so much. :(

    My wife and I are staying with our 2017 Prius Prime and 2020 Crosstrek Hybrid for now. Maybe a full EV again when the time is right. Probably won't be the bZ4X, but I'm not ruling it out. I like the Niro EV and Kona EV at the moment though they won't do for long distance travel. Their quick charging isn't up to the current state of fast charging. The Bolt EV would be a similar vehicle to those two, especially with the replacement packs. I would love the Kia EV6, but see the above lamentations about prices. $50-60k? No thanks. The Tesla Model 3 was similarly eliminated due to price, and the continuous elimination of the lowest priced models. Can't blame Tesla for a great business model, though.
     
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  10. thunderstruck

    thunderstruck Super Moderator

    Between the chip shortage and rising gas prices there are hardly any hybrids to be had, at least in Florida. I was looking to get one before I moved down here in December but it wasn't meant to be I guess. I was even willing to consider another Ioniq hybrid, but they were not to be found. I wish to God Hyundai would give up that stupid DSG gearbox and use a CVT. My 2016 Prius was great, wish I still had it. Hoping the US dollar survives Brandon's assault long enough to get another hybrid. "You'll own nothing and be happy."
     
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  11. BillLin

    BillLin PV solar, geothermal HVAC, hybrids and electrics

    I've read car reviews of Florida residents who purchased hybrids from Maryland. While casting broader searches, I have looked at inventory there as well.
     
    xcel likes this.
  12. thunderstruck

    thunderstruck Super Moderator

    I paid close attention to detail when I drove up to Sarasota from Port Charlotte the other day via 75 and backroads and was able to get a hair under 40. For a car rated at 25/31 I was impressed. "Driving slow, saving gas" would be a good bumper sticker for all the people passing me.
     
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  13. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    I am heading to the bZ4X short lead in Encinitas, CA, the next city over, and the details are embargoed until April 12th, 2022. Most of the "stuff" above is correct with a few changes. I asked to take one out at night for the data to create an uncalibrated Speed vs Energy Economy curve and to record a 5 to 80 percent charging profile. I hope Toyota will allow it. ;)

    2023 Toyota bZ4X

    [​IMG]
    I saw 4 of these in flight or fight formation on a secondary in my home town of Carlsbad two days ago.​

    Wayne
     
  14. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    Love the 29" wheels. Smirk.
     
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  15. Janice Cooper

    Janice Cooper Member

    There are so many electric vehicles coming out in the next couple of years. I’m excited. My house will require an electric panel upgrade, but I really want a plug in hybrid or bev.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2022
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  16. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    Right now I want a PHEV , but Honda and Toyota are not cooperating.
    Being an old fart , I'm not comfortable buying anything else.
     
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  17. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Janice:
    There are indeed!

    While the market has not yet settled in terms of supply and thus the dealerships are taking extreme advantage of the consumer currently, when this finally settles down and you can pick up the bZ4X, Ioniq 5, an EV6, Mach-E, or Polestar 2 for $5k under retail along with the Fed TCs and state rebates, the future looks exceptionally bright for all of us. The variety of truly great and green consumer transportation offerings along with the reductions in emissions will turn the world into a much less hostile place. Just my opinion anuyway?

    Wayne
     
  18. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    Ya think ? I'm glad I don't NEED a new car at this time. These darned Yota's are too reliable.
    Instead , many people buy a pre-owned ( we once called them "used" ) car for more than the price of a new car.

    I'll sit this one out.
     
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  19. Janice Cooper

    Janice Cooper Member

    So true! I was in a car accident a few months ago (bruised but ok). I thought they might total my car, so I started researching options. It was shocking to see used cars priced as high or higher than new cars. THEN they add thousands to the MSRP of the new cars! Argh!! My car is repaired, but I’m still dreaming of driving an EV.
     
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  20. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Trollbait:
    The one saving grace is that it is rated more than this. April 12th is the day I can post the results.

    Wayne
     
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