Revolutionary Toyota Electric Car Boasts Manual Transmission
November 1, 2023
As Toyota edges closer to launching its first electric car equipped with a manual transmission, the innovative feature has been revealed to be an optional factory addition for the forthcoming generation of Toyota EVs. The software-based system has been developed over three years and aims to ensure electric cars maintain the fun and involvement associated with internal combustion engines.
The manual transmission will debut in the production version of the FT-Se sports car, expected to hit the production lines in 2026. The system operates almost entirely on software, with physical components limited to a clutch pedal and gearshift borrowed from the Toyota GR86, plus a rev counter and new switchgear to select the mode. Additionally, paddle shifts are a possible feature.
Driving Toyota's manual BEV is an experience designed to trick the driver into forgetting they are in an electric vehicle. With the push of a button, the car produces the engine sound of a Volkswagen Golf GTI, adding to the immersive experience. The short, precise gearshift and the heft of the clutch, combined with features like engine braking and coasting, provide a tactile and engaging driving experience that is often lacking in electric vehicles.
Engineers at Toyota have designed the manual transmission system as a response to Chairman Akio Toyoda's call for electric cars to be more than just a "commodity" and to offer a fun, engaging drive. With this innovative system, Toyota is pioneering a new era of electric vehicles that promise to deliver a thrilling driving experience, proving that electric cars can indeed be as exciting and involving as their internal combustion engine counterparts.
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