That's the word from Bloomberg, anyway, which goes on to say that Toyota could introduce the fuel cell sedan to the US in 2014 as a 2015 model, "for a price comparable to a mid-size BMW or Tesla Model S." That narrows down the previously hinted-at price of between $50,000 and $100,000 a bit. Last month, Toyota's Chris Hostetter, Toyota USA's group vice president of strategic planning, told reporters the car will cost in the neighborhood of $50,000, "depending on how big your neighborhood is" and that it will have a range of 300 miles. That's the kind of math that led Tesla CEO Elon Musk to say fuel cells were really "fool cells," last month (see Bloomberg for more).
Toyota revealed the FCV-R fuel cell vehicle concept (pictured) at Tokyo in 2011. This week, it is leading a "Future of Mobility Conversation" at the 2013 Aspen Ideas Festival and is once again talking about hydrogen fuel cell vehicles with Toyota's Fuel Cell Hybrid Vehicle – Advanced (FCHV-adv) in tow.
- Toyota joins Aspen Ideas Festival as presenting underwriter for first time
- Advanced technology vehicles on display
- Experts to discuss the role of automated technologies in reducing global traffic fatalities
Chris Hostetter, group vice president of strategic planning for Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc., along with North American Business Strategy Corporate Manager Jim Pisz and Senior Strategic Planner of Advanced Technology Jaycie Chitwood, will speak to the policy, economic and infrastructure implications of these new technologies.
"Participating in the Aspen Ideas Festival provides Toyota a wonderful opportunity to talk with hundreds of highly respected leaders and thinkers about issues that impact our safety, our economies and our urban environments," Hostetter said. "Toyota's research and investments demonstrate our commitment to reducing climate impacts and advancing real-world driving safety. We are looking forward to adding our thoughts and expertise to the conversation that will take place in Aspen."
Toyota, which has put more than 5 million hybrid vehicles on the road around the world since 1997, has set hydrogen fuel cell vehicles as a key research and development priority for the company. It has committed to introducing a zero-emission hydrogen fuel cell sedan by 2015. Toyota's Fuel Cell Hybrid Vehicle – Advanced (FCHV-adv), part of a fleet of 100 in a nationwide demonstration program, will be on-site at the festival.
Toyota's participation in the Aspen Ideas Festival includes the involvement of TMS, the Toyota Technical Center and the Collaborative Safety Research Center, which shares Toyota talent, technology and data with a broad range of institutions and regulators to achieve results that will benefit society.
Along with the FCHV-adv, a Toyota RAV4 EV and Lexus LS will be on display to showcase advanced technologies that are on the road today.
Also while at the Aspen Ideas Festival, Toyota executives will spend time with 24 teens who participated in the Aspen Challenge, which involved young people designing solutions to some of the nation's most difficult problems. They will join a facilitated discussion around urban mobility, as well as test out Toyota's distracted driving simulator.
For more information about Toyota's environmental, safety and quality activities and initiatives, visit www.toyota.com/esq.