WASHINGTON — Toyota Motor Corp said Wednesday it will build a new sport utility vehicle at its $1.6 billion joint venture assembly plant in Alabama rather than produce Corolla cars. The largest Japanese automaker announced in January 2018 it would build the factory in Alabama in a joint venture with Mazda. Toyota said the shift is due to "a growing consumer appetite for light trucks and SUVs." Mazda announced in February 2019 that it would build a new SUV at the plant. Toyota said it still expects the plan to start production in 2021. Construction remains on schedule, and hiring has begun. The plant could create up to 4,000 new jobs and build 300,000 vehicles annually. Corolla production will remain at Toyota's plant in Blue Springs, Miss.
The new-generation Suzuki Jimny has managed to conquer the hearts and minds of off-road enthusiasts. Unlike other tiny ‘SUVs', it's actually built on a ladder-on-frame chassis, features all-wheel drive, solid axles, low-range gearbox and pretty much everything needed to turn it into a small off-road warrior.
Somewhat unexpectedly, a new Sony Xperia smartphone model has just popped up on XperiFirm – a third-party repository to download Xperia firmware. XperiFirm does not host any files themselves, but replicates what they are seeing on Sony's servers. This normally only happens once the phone is due to launch within weeks.
Japanese engineers and industry officials have staged an event in Tokyo featuring ultra-small electric vehicles aimed at seniors. The move comes as the aging population has led to a rise in fatal accidents caused by elderly drivers.
The EVs have maximum speeds of about 60 kilometers per hour. Some are equipped with sensors that detect obstacles. Ministry officials say they may offer subsidies to help the spread of the vehicles.