Ford and Toyota will collaborate to share the costs of creating hybrid trucks and SUVs, The New York Times' Nick Bunkley reports. The automakers won't team up to build the cars themselves, but on creating a gas-electric hybrid system to power the cars. Though the companies will remain competitors, a Ford executive said, this plan will help them offer more fuel-effiecient hybrids cheaper and sooner.
Right now, neither Ford nor Toyota sells a hybrid truck--Ford sells the most popular pickup, the F-150, and Toyato sells the most popular hybrid, the Prius. The Wall Street Journal
's Jeff Bennett and Mike Ramsey
call the team-up an "unusual pairing" and a response to tough new fuel efficiency standards put in place by the Environmental Protection Agency last month.
The companies signed a memorandum of understanding Monday, Bunkley reports, with a formal agreement expected next year (above, Fords' Derrick Kuzak shakes hands with Toyota's Takeshi Uchiyamada). They'll also collaborate on systems for offering more Internet-based services to drivers.
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