Ford, Toyota Partner for Light-Truck Hybrid System

Ford Motor Company is an American multinational automaker based in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. The automaker was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. In addition to the Ford and Lincoln brands, Ford also owns a small stake in Mazda in Japan and Aston Martin in the UK. Ford’s former UK subsidiaries Jaguar and Land Rover were sold to Tata Motors of India in March 2008. In 2010 Ford sold Volvo to Geely Automobile. Ford introduced methods for large-scale manufacturing of cars and large-scale management of an industrial workforce using elaborately engineered manufacturing sequences typified by moving assembly lines. Henry Ford’s methods came to be known around the world as Fordism by 1914.

Toyota Motor Corporation commonly known simply as Toyota and abbreviated as TMC, is a multinational automaker headquartered in Toyota City, Aichi, Japan. In 2010, Toyota Motor Corporation employed 317,734 people worldwide, and was the world’s largest automobile manufacturer by production. The company was founded by Kiichiro Toyoda in 1937 as a spinoff from his father’s company Toyota Industries to create automobiles. Three years earlier, in 1934, while still a department of Toyota Industries, it created its first product, the Type A engine, and, in 1936, its first passenger car, the Toyota AA. Toyota Motor Corporation group companies are Toyota (including the Scion brand), Lexus, Daihatsu and Hino Motors, along with several “non-automotive” companies. TMC is part of the Toyota Group, one of the largest conglomerates in the world.

Today, Ford Motor Company and Toyota Motor Corporation have announced plans to collaborate on development of a rear-drive hybrid system for light trucks and SUVs.

While both companies have been working independently on hybrid setups for trucks, they found common ground upon entering discussions about a possible collaboration, according to a news release. The system will be based on all-new architecture and share common components, but Ford and Toyota will individually integrate the system into their vehicles and calibrate the system’s performance, according to the release. The companies believe they can introduce hybrid technology to trucks and SUVs faster and more affordably together than either could by working alone.

“This is the kind of collaborative effort that is required to address the big global challenges of energy independence and environmental sustainability,” said Ford President and CEO Alan Mulally.

Toyota President Akio Toyoda called the deal, “an important building block for future mobility in the U.S.”

Ford and Toyota will also work together on standards and technologies to help improve their vehicles’ telematics systems. While currently in the preliminary stages, the companies expect to formalize the agreement next year.