Toyota’s innovative mobility solutions taking Olympic transport to new heights in Tokyo

Worldwide Olympic Partner Toyota has introduced a diverse range of innovative mobility solutions at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, supporting the safe and efficient transport of athletes and officials and contributing to smooth Games-time operations.

Fleet of Toyota e-Palette vehicles at Tokyo 2020 Olympic Village IOC / Matthew Jordan Smith

This includes specially designed "Tokyo 2020 Version" e-Palette vehicles to support athlete mobility in the Olympic Village, with the battery-electric, automated vehicles having been adapted specifically for use in Tokyo based in part on feedback from athletes about their mobility needs during previous Games. Features include large doors and electric ramps to allow groups of athletes to board quickly and easily. The vehicle is controlled by an automated driving system capable of operating up to 19 kilometres per hour and is supported by an on-board safety operator.

Toyota electric people transporter IOC

"Olympic and Paralympic athletes work tirelessly to achieve the impossible, and we wanted to provide them with a vehicle specifically designed and calibrated to fit their mobility needs during Tokyo 2020," said Takahiro Muta, development leader for the unique Tokyo 2020 Version e-Palette. "Throughout the development process, athletes, especially Paralympians, helped us to better understand how we could adapt and upgrade the e-Palette to better meet the need for simple, convenient and comfortable mobility. We are proud to work with them on a vehicle that will not just move athletes physically throughout the Olympic and Paralympic Villages, but will also offer them new opportunities to interact with others, share new experiences and be moved emotionally."

Toyota robot takes a shot at basketball event at Tokyo 2020 Toyota's CUE, the AI Basketball Robot 2021 Getty Images

In addition, Toyota has developed a new Accessible People Mover (APM) specially for use at the Games. These low-speed, short-distance battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are helping to transport athletes and officials within venues, especially those with special mobility needs, and are also being deployed to support relief activities during events, with the second and third rows adapted to accommodate a stretcher.

In total, Toyota has provided around 3,400 mobility products and/or vehicles for Tokyo 2020, and nearly 90 per cent of the official vehicle fleet is electrified. Electrified vehicles include hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), such as the hydrogen-powered Mirai, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), the Prius PHV (known as Prius Prime in some markets), and BEVs.

Toyota became a Worldwide Olympic Partner in 2015, signing an agreement that runs through to 2024 in the first-ever mobility category, which includes vehicles (including passenger cars, urban mobility vehicles and commercial vehicles), mobility support robots and mobility services (including vehicle and road safety and transportation support systems and services).

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