UK government invests nearly $100 million into electric vehicle research

The U.K. government has announced £80 million ($99.7 million) of investment to develop the “next generation of electric vehicles” and, potentially, hybrid aircraft.

Authorities said Monday that the funding would, among other things, help to reduce carbon emissions from industries including transport, construction and energy.

Industry and academia are set to lead the development of new technologies called electronics, electrical machines and drives (PEMD) by the government. These are a range of products that can be used with batteries or other electrical sources to convert fossil fuel-based systems into electrical ones.

The investment comes under the umbrella of something called the Grand Challenge of Mobility’s Industrial Strategy Future. The goals of this challenge are to get rid of diesel rolling stock from UK railways by 2040 and deliver zero-carbon road transport by 2040.

“Driving the electric revolution will strengthen the U.K.’s capability to deliver next generation electric vehicles, hybrid aircraft and smart grids,” Mark Walport, the chief executive of U.K. Research and Innovation, said in a statement Monday.

“It will ensure these industries, both large and small, are rooted here in the U.K. attracting inward investment into our manufacturing base,” he added.

Toyota has signed an agreement with China’s BYD Company to jointly develop electric battery vehicles elsewhere in the electric vehicle sector.

In a Friday announcement, Toyota said that developing sedans and low-floor SUVs would work with BYD. The Japanese car giant said it wanted to launch vehicles on the Chinese market “in the first half of the 2020s,” using the Toyota brand.

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