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Toyota denies plan to make plug-in hybrids in China

Japanese carmaker Toyota Motor Corp. denied a news report that it was planning to start assembling plug-in hybrids in China by 2012, when it kicks off domestic production of the vehicles, according to Reuters.

“We have no plans to produce plug-in hybrids in China,” a Toyota spokeswoman said.

According to a report in Nikkei Business Daily on December 1, Tianjin-FAW-Toyota, Toyota’s joint venture with China’s FAW Group Corp., would launch plug-in hybrid vehicles in China. Output will likely start at a few thousand units a year and the plug-in hybrids will be launched worldwide by early 2012, the newspaper said.

The automaker plans to assemble plug-in hybrids at its Tsutsumi Plant in Aichi Prefecture and aims to nurture the eco-car industry in China, which is the world’s biggest auto market, the newspaper said.

Ahead of starting Chinese production and sales, Toyota will test the vehicles in Tianjin, according to the report.

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