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Business deals

Toyota charges into electric car race with Panasonic tie-up

Automaker switches off cautious approach to EVs as China quota excludes hybrids

The iRide is among Toyota's prototypes for electric vehicles. (Photo by Tomoki Mera)

NAGOYA/OSAKA -- Toyota Motor is entering the electric car market at full force, an area it was one step behind in, with technological help from battery partner Panasonic, as it shores up its presence in the world's largest auto market of China.

The companies on Tuesday announced plans to set up a joint battery venture by the end of 2020, with Toyota taking a 51% stake and supplying 500 staff. Panasonic will own the rest and provide 3,000 people. Sales of batteries produced by the new entity will be handled by Panasonic.

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