Toyota is rumored to be leveraging the technology from the Mirai hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle and placing it into a future flagship model of the Lexus LS. The proposed luxury sedan could debut by 2017 with a range possibly just below that of the Mirai and slightly tweaked styling to cool the new components.
The bad news, as we've previously reported, is that Honda's first production hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle won't debut until 2016, a bit later than expected. The good news is that the automaker may produce a device that will let that FCV's motor power up other devices as well. So it's a tradeoff of sorts.
We Get An Early Steer Of The Toyota Mirai, Volkswagen Passat HyMotion And Audi A7 H-Tron
The LA Auto Show is known for its environmentally friendly vehicle debuts. At last year's show, hydrogen fuel cell concepts from Honda and Toyota joined a lease-ready Hyundai Tucson FCEV to cast a green hue over the convention center. This year, automakers took us a step closer to a fuel cell future by offering drives of their hydrogen-electric hybrids.
It's starting to feel like the automotive landscape is right on the cusp of a boom in hydrogen-fueled vehicles. After all, the Toyota FCV is nearly ready, Volkswagen is readying a fuel cell concept for this week's Los Angeles Auto Show and Hyundai already sells its Tucson Fuel Cell. The next big name to add to that list might be BMW, as the company's co-development deal with Toyota starts to bear fruit.
$8,000 Tax Credit Could Expire Well Before Car Arrives
The Toyota Mirai is coming to California next year and it will arrive bearing a $57,500 MSRP. Toyota says that with state and federal incentives worth a total of $13,000, interested customers will be able to buy a Mirai for under $45,000. If you're more into leasing, then you can get the Mirai for $499 a month for 36 months (with $3,649 due at signing). Both options come with free hydrogen fuel for "up to three years."
Surprise Entry Into The Show's Green Theme This Year
Amid the flurry of hydrogen announcements from Toyota and Honda last night, Volkwagen has something to add: a new hydrogen fuel cell concept vehicle. This will be the first VW hydrogen fuel cell vehicle in many years – remember the Tiguan Hy-Motion back in 2008? – and it comes as a bit of a surprise.
Japanese Automaker Confirms H2 Vehicle Name, Means 'Future'
Looks like someone was able to read the future back in July. That's when rumors first circulated that Toyota's upcoming fuel cell vehicle will be called the Mirai. Today, Toyota president Akio Toyoda confirmed the name alongside plans to build out a hydrogen refueling infrastructure in the US Northeast.
There's a lot of information on display at the 2014 Michelin Challenge Bibendum. We've spent time this week trying to sponge it all in but one of the charts caught out eye today. In a session on hydrogen vehicles – about which we'll have more later – a representative from Air Liquide, Jean-Baptiste Mossa, shared a chart about how hydrogen vehicles fall in a sweet spot for vehicle emissions and range. Maybe you can notice the number that stood out.
California isn't Nevada, but Golden State residents are nonetheless being given a chance to make a small bet on what may be a large prize, courtesy of Toyota. The Japanese automaker will start selling its first hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles on the West Coast late next year, and before that, Toyota would like to pick up some positive publicity by giving America's first one away to one lucky Californian.
Toyota's confidence in H2 technology remains as strong as ever. The company has released a new commercial that says it's not a matter of if we all start driving hydrogen cars, but when. In fact, the 70-second spot calls 2015 the turning point for the alternative powertrain technology.
Japanese Automaker Predicts H2 Cost Of $5/kg One Day
Anyone who's been paying attention already knows that Bob Carter, Toyota Motor Sales' senior vice president of automotive operations, is confident of the hydrogen future. Very confident, even eight years ago. So his speech today at the 2014 J.P. Morgan Auto Conference was not surprising for its bullish content but for the mention of a few vague specifics. Most important, Toyota is going to make an announcement about hydrogen cars on the east coast of the US before too long.
Japan's prime minister has a lead foot, apparently. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe recently had a photo op with Toyota's first production hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, even getting behind the wheel for a spin (no chauffeur for him, so much respect on our part). His primary impression was that the car had great pickup, before settling on the more politically correct view of noting the vehicle's lack of emissions.
Anybody remember the Ford Futura? It wasn't exactly a world-beater of a car, so we don't think the name Toyota's has apparently chosen for its first production fuel-cell vehicle is a tribute of sorts. Though one never knows. Maybe Toyota just likes 18-inch-tall EVs.
The folks at Toyota in Japan can be pretty blunt about electric-vehicle technology prospects as a viable transportation alternative to the internal combustion engine. Here in the states? Slightly more sanguine.