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Thu, May 04, 2023

Joby and Toyota Enter Into Supply Agreement

Let’s Go Places …

Joby Aviation, Inc., the Santa Cruz-based maker of electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft, announced in a 01 May 2023 press release that it had signed a long-term agreement with Toyota Motor Corporation by which the latter entity will supply key powertrain and actuation components essential to the production of Joby’s eVTOL production model.

The agreement occasions the continuation of a long-standing partnership between Joby and Toyota—a partnership that has seen the two companies collaborate on a variety of projects in support of the production and assembly of Joby’s inchoate eVTOL.

Toyota is Joby’s largest external shareholder, having invested some $400-million in the company.

Joby founder and CEO JoeBen Bevirt stated: “Our partnership with Toyota continues to be an integral part of Joby’s success, from assisting in the design of our pilot production line in Marina, California, to supplying key components for our aircraft.”

Mr. Bevirt added: “I’m grateful for Toyota’s unwavering dedication to Joby as we work together to deliver a new form of fast, quiet, and emissions-free mobility for cities and communities around the world. Their expertise and knowledge has helped put us on track to deliver, at scale, an aircraft that we believe is truly best-in-class.”

The components, designed by Joby and manufactured by Toyota, will be delivered to Joby’s powertrain and electronics manufacturing facility in San Carlos, California. The completed powertrain assemblies will subsequently be shipped to the company’s production line in Marina, where they will be integrated into eVTOL airframes.

Intended to prove out scalable tooling and processes at low volumes in advance of full-scale aircraft production, Joby’s Marina facilities were designed with Toyota’s help, leveraging decades of the famed Japanese marque’s experience in the infrastructurally-intensive business of producing reliable, high-quality automobiles at volume.

Toyota Motor Corporation Connected Company president Keiji Yamamoto remarked: “We are very pleased to have reached this milestone with our key partner.  Our mutual goal is mass production of eVTOL and helping Joby apply the best practices of the Toyota Production System in meeting high quality, reliability, safety, and strict cost standards. We are excited about the potential for further collaboration as we seek to realize Mobility for All with a seamlessly integrated air-to-ground mobility network.”

Toyota’s manufacturing prowess and technical expertise in powertrain components is an invaluable addition to Joby’s operation. In addition to helping actualize the powertrain architecture of its emergent eVTOL, Toyota’s $400-million investment will help see Joby’s creation through the rigors of certification and commercialization in advance of competing eVTOL concerns, thereby affording Joby a competitive advantage.

Presuming development proceeds in accordance with prevailing expectations, Joby’s eVTOL will come to market as a piloted, four-passenger, commercial aircraft with a single-charge range of 130-nautical-miles and a maximum speed of 174-knots. The electrically-powered, ostensibly zero-emission machine is designed to be one-hundred-times quieter than a conventional helicopter during takeoff and landing. Joby plans to mass-produce its eVTOL and utilize a fleet of such to operate a piloted on-demand air-taxi service.



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