The second official bZ electric car from Toyota looks a lot like an electric Crown.
Toyota recently introduced the 2023 bZ4X as the first of several upcoming "Beyond Zero" EVs, which will all use the letters "bZ" in their names. Toyota has trademarked bZ1 through bZ5 and bZ1X through to bZ5X, but up until now, we've only seen one of these cars.
Thanks to four leaked images from China, we now know what the new Toyota bZ3 looks like.
This electric sedan will launch in the Chinese market later this year, built at the FAW-Toyota joint venture plant. Based on the styling, the bZ3 is clearly inspired by the bZ SDN, one of 16 EV concepts shown by Toyota in 2021.
The bZ3 rides on Toyota's e-TNGA architecture, but the rest of the components will likely not be US-bound. The electric motors are sourced from Fudi Industrial, a subsidiary of Chinese automaker BYD.
In the base configuration, the bZ3 produces 183 hp going out to the rear wheels, unlike the bZ4X, which is front-wheel drive. An AWD version does not appear to be available, but there is a more powerful rear-drive model producing 244 hp.
In terms of range, Toyota has not revealed any specifications. We know the car will use a BYD Blade LFP battery pack, but its exact capacity is unknown. However, the top speed is known; both variants will be capped at 99 mph.
Regarding styling, the bZ3 is far from the most exciting Chinese EV design, but it certainly looks more futuristic than the current Corolla. Some elements from the bZ4X carry over to the bZ3, but we expect the first electric Toyota sedan in the US to be larger and look more like its SUV sibling.
Since the bZ3 uses an assortment of Toyota and BYD components, we aren't sure what the interior will look like. It could bear some similarities to existing Toyota vehicles, but we expect some differences for the Chinese market.
Of course, there is little chance this BYD-powered EV will make it across the Pacific to the US. The bZ5 will likely be the first US-bound Toyota sedan.
The Toyota bZ3 will make its official debut at the Guangzhou Auto Show in November, so it won't be much longer until the full specs are revealed. Being built in China, we imagine the bZ3 will be pretty affordable, an attribute lacking in many EVs currently sold in the US.
While we'd like to see this car brought stateside as an entry-level option, we doubt it would comply with our stricter crash test regulations.