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Toyota Opens Vehicle Battery Recycling Plant in Central Thailand

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BANGKOK – Toyota Motor Thailand has opened a battery life cycle management plant in Chachoengsao. The first overseas facility outside Japan, to circulate batteries of hybrid cars sold in Thailand.

The new facility is a partnership with Toyota subsidiaries and affiliates. The facility will be run by TTK Logistics Thailand, a subsidiary of Toyota Tsusho, and is located in Chachoengsao.

Ninnart Chaithirapinyo, chairman of Toyota Motor Thailand, said the facility supports local sales of hybrid cars.

Hybrid cars are the lowest level of technology for electric vehicles, batteries need to be circulated and managed in a 3R scheme.

Mr Ninnart said that the plant will have capacity to rapidly diagnose 10,000 units a year and recycle 20,000 units a year. He said Toyota started to sell hybrid cars in Thailand in 2009, with 5,000-6,000 batteries exported to Belgium a year.

The New Toyota Facility will Service Batteries from other Brands and Electric Devices

After the rapid diagnostic process, the high-efficiency modules will be reassembled and sold as alternative hybrid rebuilt batteries.

The moderate-efficiency modules are reused for energy storage to reserve and supply energy for buildings, factories and charging stations.

The low-efficiency batteries will be shipped back to Japan and used to produce new hybrid batteries.

Mr Ninnart said Toyota has studied the circular economy concept for two years and is using operating methods developed in Aichi prefecture under Toyota Energy Solutions and Primearth EV Energy.

Toyota was the first to bring hybrid models to market in Thailand, with roughly 78,000 such cars sold as of August.

In 2019, Toyota forecasts sales of all EVs at 36,000 cars, of which 19,000 are expected to be hybrid versions.

Toyota has spent 19 billion baht on hybrid car production in Thailand, with plans to assemble 7,000 hybrid cars a year. Toyota makes 70,000 batteries and produce 9.1 million units of other parts at the Gateway plant in Chachoengsao.