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Electric shock! 2024 Toyota bZ4X cheaper than expected in Australia with a price that will rattle the Tesla Model Y!

Details for the Toyota bZ4X have dropped.

The Toyota bZ4X will launch in Australia with two powertrain options, and will be priced from $66,000.

The news follows the surprise price drop issued for the Subaru Solterra last week –the Toyota's twin under the skin – which now starts at $69,990 before on-road costs, a drop of $8000 from the initially announced price of $77,990.

It also makes the bZ4X just $600 dearer than the Tesla Model Y, which starts at $65,400 for the rear-wheel-drive model.

Toyota Australia Sales and Marketing Chief Sean Hanley had promised that the bZ4X "won't be cheap", but uniquely, the brand's first EV will be offered with a "full-service lease option" that the brand says will help alleviate any BEV "uncertainty".

But first, the prices. The FWD bZ4X (so called because of its front-mounted electric motor that drives the front wheels) opens proceedings, and is priced from $66,000.

Also available is a twin-motor variant, called the AWD bZ4X, which adds a second electric motor at the rear axle. It's priced from $74,900. 

Alternatively, the Toyota bZ4X is being offered with a three-year full-service lease, which is offered through Toyota's finance arm. It includes scheduled servicing, repairs, tyres, roadside assist, rego and insurance. Interesingly, Toyota retains ownership of the vehicle, and at the end of the agreed period, the owner can either hand it back, lease it again, or jump into another Toyota. The idea, the brand says, is to cycle several owners through each bZ4X. How much the lease will cost though is yet to be determined, with Toyota saying location and vehicle use will determine the pricing for individual drivers.

Australia also gets the just-updated bZ4X, which Toyota calls the "latest global specification", which was essentially relaunched to iron out some kinks in the first edition. It's also the first Toyota to ride on the Japanese giant's e-TNGA platform, designed to maximise rigidity and interior packaging.

“The bZ4X is not just an electric car; it’s the foundation for the next phase of our electrification strategy that hits a sweet spot with its mid-size SUV dimensions, space and functionality,” says Hanley.

“As the first Toyota BEV, it will accelerate our multi-pathway approach that’s designed to help our customers lower their tailpipe carbon emissions while leaving no-one behind."

The front-wheel-drive bZ4X get LED headlights, 20-inch alloys, heated side mirrors, a powered tailgate and privacy glass on all rear windows.

Inside, there is fabric and faux-leather trim, a powered driver's seat, heated front seats, dual-zone climate and keyless entry and start. On the tech front, expect a sizeable 12.3-inch central touchscreen with wireless phone mirroring, and a "Hey Toyota" virtual assistant. The cloud-based nav will guide you to charging stations, and over-the-air updates are available, too.

The bZ4X features a sizeable 12.3-inch central touchscreen.

The entry-level bZ4X also includes a ton of safety kit, including AEB with pedestrian and cyclise detection, and well as the usual lane-keeping functionality, speed-sign recognition and active cruise control, along with seven airbags.

Step up to the AWD model, and you'll find a more stylish exterior, including a roof spoiler, a glass roof, roof rails and gloss-back trimmings.

Inside, there's a JBL sound system, a 10W wireless charger, ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel, and a kick sensor for the powered tailgate. You also get more safety stuff, including blind-spot monitoring, safe exit assist and a better parking camera.

It's also billed as the off-road-ready model, with 212mm of ground clearance and X-Mode off-road drive modes (including Snow/Dirt and Deep Snow/Mud) to deliver what Toyota calls "benchmark off-road ability among BEV SUVs".

On the powertrain front, FWD bZ4X models deliver 150kW and 266Nm, while AWD models up the grunt to 160kW and 337Nm.

Both models are fitted with 71.4kWh lithium-ion battery that delivers 436km on the WLTP cycle for front-drive models, while AWD models will travel 411km between charges. The bZ4X is set up for DC fast charging, but it's limited to 150kW.

All models are covered by Toyota's five-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty, with servicing required every 12 months or 15,000kms - capped at $180 per visit for the first five years.

Andrew Chesterton
Contributing Journalist
Andrew Chesterton should probably hate cars. From his hail-damaged Camira that looked like it had spent a hard life parked at the end of Tiger Woods' personal driving range, to the Nissan Pulsar Reebok that shook like it was possessed by a particularly mean-spirited demon every time he dared push past 40km/h, his personal car history isn't exactly littered with gold. But that seemingly endless procession of rust-savaged hate machines taught him something even more important; that cars are more than a collection of nuts, bolts and petrol. They're your ticket to freedom, a way to unlock incredible experiences, rolling invitations to incredible adventures. They have soul. And so, somehow, the car bug still bit. And it bit hard. When "Chesto" started his journalism career with News Ltd's Sunday and Daily Telegraph newspapers, he covered just about everything, from business to real estate, courts to crime, before settling into state political reporting at NSW Parliament House. But the automotive world's siren song soon sounded again, and he begged anyone who would listen for the opportunity to write about cars. Eventually they listened, and his career since has seen him filing car news, reviews and features for TopGear, Wheels, Motor and, of course, CarsGuide, as well as many, many others. More than a decade later, and the car bug is yet to relinquish its toothy grip. And if you ask Chesto, he thinks it never will.
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