The Japanese auto giant is planning to supply the batteries needed to power electric cars to Toyota Motor Corp. by 2020, the automaker said on Wednesday.
The new battery technology could be a game changer for the electric car industry as well as the global economy, said Takahiro Morita, Toyota’s president of energy business.
“The Japanese are really on the verge of taking the leap in battery technology,” Mr. Morita said.
Toyota has invested about $500 million in battery research and development and is already testing a number of battery packs for the next generation of its Prius and Camry electric vehicles.
The company plans to make its batteries available to automakers through a partnership with Nissan Motor Co., a company that also makes electric cars.
The two companies are also working on the potential of battery technology for other vehicles.
Nissan is also investing in a new battery that it is developing for electric cars, the company said in a statement.
Mr. Marumoto said Toyota had already begun production of battery-powered electric vehicles and that its plan was to make those vehicles available to customers in 2020.
The automaker is expected to unveil its electric vehicles at an event in Tokyo on Nov. 21.
The announcement comes a year after the company released its first electric car, the Nissan Leaf, a small crossover electric car with a range of up to 300 miles.
The Leaf was designed with electric drive and the ability to travel more than 150 miles on a single charge.
It was the first to be sold in the U.S. market and has been sold there since October.
The next-generation Nissan Leaf electric car is expected later this year.