© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Toyota Motor Corp. incoming President and Chief Executive Koji Sato attends a news conference in Tokyo, Japan February 13, 2023. REUTERS/Issei Kato/File Photo
TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota shareholders backed the board and voted down the first resolution proposed in 18 years at an annual general meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, an endorsement of the automaker a day after it laid out an extensive electric vehicle strategy.
Toyota aims to produce more efficient, faster-charging versions of current batteries to improve EV driving range and cost, and, within the decade, mass produce game-changing solid-state batteries after saying it had overcome a technical hurdle.
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The carmaker said it would radically redesign manufacturing, having vehicles drive along the production line instead of being carried by conveyor. It will also employ a die-casting process that eliminates welding pioneered by EV leader Tesla (NASDAQ:).
Two huge U.S. public pension funds voted against the re-election of Chairman Akio Toyoda, with proxy advisor Glass Lewis saying re-election threatened board independence. Toyota said its board meets Tokyo Stock Exchange standards.
Three asset managers have urged Toyota to improve disclosure of climate change lobbying in a proposal backed by proxy advisor Institutional Shareholder Services. Toyota recommended voting otherwise, citing the fluidity of related factors.