Toyota revealed a boxy, compact electric vehicle concept called the Kayoibako that it reckons will be able to cater to the needs of a lot of people living in urban areas, including small businesses, shuttle services, and last-mile cargo delivery firms.
Thanks to its modular floor design and customizable software, the electric van can be configured as a mobile shop by installing product display shelves, a minibus by installing additional seats, or a personal vehicle by personalizing everything to the tastes and needs of the owner.
Toyota says that the word “kayoibako” comes from the world of shipping containers and refers to configurable containers that can accommodate changeable inserts, adopting a one-size-fits-all approach.
Gallery: Toyota Kayoibako Concept
Measuring 157 inches (3,990 millimeters) long, 70.4 in (1,790 mm) wide, and 73 in (1,855 mm) tall, the zero-emissions minivan is 7 in shorter than the Chevrolet Bolt EV, so don’t expect to move house with Toyota’s battery-powered modular van. It is, however, about 4 inches wider and 10 in taller, so headroom and shoulder room shouldn’t be an issue.
The Japanese automaker says the Kayoibako EV “is a new compact space concept that represents the future of mobility,” and it might be onto something here, considering not everybody needs massive, 200-kilowatt-hour batteries and hundreds of miles of range on a full charge on a daily basis.
Toyota Kayoibako Concept
The cube-like van is Toyota’s third concept vehicle prepared for the Japan Mobility Show 2023, with teasers of a crossover named FT-3e and a two-door sports car dubbed FT-Se being published yesterday. Lexus, the Nippon company’s luxury brand, is also set to unveil several all-electric concepts at this year's Tokyo-bound auto show.
In related news, Toyota partnered with Idemitsu – a petrochemical company – to bring solid-state EV batteries capable of delivering over 621 miles of range on a full charge to market by 2027 or 2028. Before this happens, the Japanese car manufacturer wants to launch a host of new battery-powered models based on a bespoke EV platform that should offer at least 497 miles of range.