At this year’s Indonesia International Motor Show, Toyota presented the Kijang Innova EV Concept, which is based on the second-generation MPV that we’re already familiar with. The reveal of the concept is significant, as Toyota has previously said it will invest a substantial amount of money in Indonesia to produce a range of electrified cars, including no less than 10 electric vehicles over the next five years.

The production version of the Kijang Innova EV Concept will likely be one of the 10 EVs planned, but why was the MPV chosen to lead the EV pilot project for Toyota in Indonesia? According to a report by Autonetmagz, the answer is simple: faster adaptation.

See, localisation is a big deal for Toyota in Indonesia, with Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indonesia (TMMIN), a subsidiary of Toyota Astra Motor (TAM), being responsible for producing a wide range of models, including the Yaris, Vios, Fortuner, Sienta and the Kijang Innova.

Out of the five models mentioned (there are plenty more not listed), the Kijang Innova has the highest percentage of local content at 85% – the first Kijang launched in 1977 only had 19%. Over the years, this partnership with OEMs has resulted in a rather robust ecosystem, with TAM having ties with 1,656 companies (tier one to tier three suppliers).

As TAM pushes for EVs in Indonesia, it wants to ensure this ecosystem is maintained and that new supply chains can be quickly created to adapt to electrification technology. The company intends to accelerate the creation of an expansive EV ecosystem in Indonesia, and the highly-localised Kijang Innova was chosen because electrifying the MPV can be done faster and efficiently, with few changes required and at no compromise to its existing business partners.

Moreover, TAM told Autonetmagz that the Kijang Innova EV Concept represents a “form of support for Toyota’s principles and their trust in Indonesia.” It also serves to develop the technical capabilities of local engineers and talent thorough the transfer of knowledge, reinforcing the local automotive industry further.