Toyota Motor Corp. (TM) - Get Report is grabbing the tech and auto headlines this morning after announcing it plans to start testing self-driving electric cars around 2020.

The cars will be an extension of the Concept-i model that Toyota unveiled at CES 2017, but will also include a smaller vehicle and a scooter. What's notable about Toyota's Concept-i plans is the fact that the new vehicles will be designed to talk to drivers and recognize their emotions, taking over driving if the car decides that the driver is fatigued or on edge.

Concept-i's first road tests will take place in Japan around 2020, according to Toyota.

Toyota isn't a stranger to electric vehicles -- the firm has been selling fully electric RAV4 SUVs in some markets since 1997. But Monday's announcement signals that Toyota wants to have a serious presence in the electric and autonomous car market that's heating up thanks to competitors like Tesla Inc. (TSLA) - Get Report and General Motors (GM) - Get Report .

While shares aren't reacting much in Monday's trading session, the long-term trajectory is pretty hard to miss for Toyota shareholders: This stock is in breakout mode right now.

To figure out how to trade it, we're turning to the chart for a technical look:

Image placeholder title

Since bottoming out in the middle of June, Toyota has been quickly making up for its underperformance in 2017. You don't need to be an expert technical trader to figure out Toyota's price trajectory in those recent months -- shares have been moving up and to the right.

Shares kicked off a parabolic uptrend midway through the summer, rallying all the way up to prior highs from last winter, up at the $123 price level. The gap-up that Toyota's shares took last week following a Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association sales report was enough to trigger a breakout above that prior price ceiling, clearing the way to more upside ahead for Toyota.

Relative strength, the indicator down at the bottom of Toyota's chart, has been in an uptrend of its own since the middle of June. That's an indication that the price reversal this summer wasn't just an about-face for Toyota's own price trend, it also took this Japanese automaker from laggard to leader on a relative basis versus the S&P 500. As long as the relative strength uptrend remains intact here, Toyota remains predisposed to keep on outperforming the S&P.

Now looks like a good time to be a Toyota bull following the $123 breakout, especially as shares hover just above that level this week.

More of What's Trending on TheStreet:

This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.