Hydrogen Fuel Cell Toyota Entering Production this December

Toyota FCV concept functioning 1 photo
Photo: Toyota
Previous reports indicated Toyota was planing to begin production of its first fuel cell passenger car in 2015. However, new rumors hint that the first models could arrive before the end of 2014. Got hydrogen?
Sources close to Toyota told Japan Times that the automaker is pushing the FCV into production ahead of schedule, with the Motomachi plant in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture in Japan, considering making dozens of them each month starting mid-december this year.

The price for Toyota’s newest green technology on wheels is expected to be around ¥80 million (~$79,000) and with its “over 100 kW” electric motor will be able to take you around 300 miles (482 km) on a full tank of hydrogen.

Sounds a lot for an electric car that’s weaker and probably less luxurious than a Tesla Model S, but it comes with some big pluses; such as a bigger range, around 3 minutes tank refilling time and the possibility to use it as a generator and power your house.

Toyota also said to further improve the fuel cell and cut down the vehicle’s cost to around ¥3 - ¥5 million ($29,000 - $48,000) by 2020, when the car is said to be shifted to mass production.

Too scared to put your money up on such a contraption? Well, Toyota took the first production mules into extensive testing a while ago, also putting it agains its worst enemy - low winter temperatures - where it worked perfectly normal.

The company also said people should not be afraid of the FCV because it uses hydrogen, a gas known for being highly flammable and responsible for burning down the world’s biggest zeppelin among others. The vehicle stores the gas in special tanks said to resist 70 MPa (690 atm/10,150 psi) and only a large caliber bullet can penetrate them. Even so, tests showed the hydrogen will just burst out through the hole, without caching fire from the bullet.
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