By Jennifer Geiger
In a statement released today, Ford and Toyota have decided to travel the hybrid truck road alone. It was just two years ago the automakers announced a plan to jointly develop a gas/electric drivetrain for use in light-duty pickups and SUVs and have it on sale by the end of the decade. The above photo was part of that announcement.
Today's announcement makes it clear that each automaker is separately pursuing the technology. "We have agreed to develop hybrid systems individually. Toyota and Ford continue to evaluate the feasibility of working together on next-generation standards for telematics and will consider other areas for future collaboration as well," Toyota said in a statement.
According to each automaker, they both remain committed to hybrid vehicles despite the end of the collaboration, with Toyota saying it's on track to offer 18 new or redesigned hybrid models globally by the end of 2015. Ford countered with its plans to triple its electrified vehicle production by the end of this year compared with 2011.
"Following the conclusion of a collaboration with Toyota, Ford is moving forward with the development of a rear-wheel-drive hybrid system on its own; Ford is on track to have the hybrid system ready later this decade on rear-wheel-drive Ford pickups and SUVs," the automaker said in a statement.