Did you know Ricky Gervais was 40 years old when he made The Office?
No one had heard of him before. Now, he is one of the richest entertainers on the planet.
The inventor of the thesaurus did it when he was 73 years old.
The President of Sony has made the Walkman just a few years away from official retirement age. . . and I was in my 30s when I tried Marmite for the first time.
All the great achievements, and all the proof that it’s never too late to try something – a view Toyota agrees with.
Because more than a decade after cars like the Nissan Leaf and Tesla Model S debuted, Toyota is finally giving us its first electric car.
But this is not a case of being fashionable late to the party.
The reason Toyota didn’t have to jump into the electric car race at the earliest is because they’re making hybrid cars for donkeys.
With average CO2 emissions from its fleet much lower than most rivals, there’s no pressure to go all-electric.
Inevitably, Toyota’s first hit was an SUV.
It’s a sell market.
More confusing is the name – bZ4X.
While it sounds like some part of a Zanussi washing machine, bZ is the name of Toyota’s new line of electric products. It stands for yond Zero.
How is it?
It’s like a Toyota, just it doesn’t make any noise.
I commend that because Toyota excels at making cars that are solid, reliable, practical, and easy to drive.
Toyota was keen to show off the bZ4X’s off-road capabilities at launch, and although it can handle some of the hard work, I struggled to see who would care.
It’s like making a tin opener that can also play God Save the Queen.
Main event: Toyota bZ4X
The battery: 71kWh
Power: 214hp, 310Nm
0-62mph: 7.7 seconds
Max speed: 100mph
Limit: 255 miles
Maybe I’m annoyed, because the all-wheel-drive bZ4X will give Yorkshire Dales customers peace of mind thanks to things like snow and mud driving modes.
But EVs are still best suited to urban or semi-urban owners, most of whom will likely enjoy saving two or three thousand dollars by buying the front-wheel drive version.
Key numbers: Range of over 280 miles in the FWD version, about 255 miles in the AWD, 80% full charge in half an hour with a 150kW charger.
The interior feels solid, and there’s a central 12-inch infotainment screen.
It’s not the sharpest or fastest compared to something from Volvo or BMW, but it depends on the job.
There’s plenty of room for a family of four inside.
In fact, the rear legroom is class-leading and the 425-liter trunk is larger than the Ford Mustang Mach-E.
My only real concern with the cabin is the fact that there’s no glove box. In a family SUV. Produced by Toyota. Really?
To make the transition to electric driving as easy as possible for customers, Toyota is offering three years of free maintenance, an installed wall-box charger from British Gas and six months of free access to the Public Charging Network. plus Toyota, all for £611 a month.
About what Ricky Gervais earns every hour these days.
Ten things you should know as a car owner
https://www.thesun.ie/motors/8448424/toyota-bz4x-first-fully-electric-suv/ The all-new reliable electric SUV with a solid interior