Whenever an automaker announces a fuel cell vehicle, one of two things happen:
- It will be near future (which it doesn't)
- It goes on sale (only in California since it has the infastructure)
Well Toyota's fuel cell vehicle will attempt to buck both of those trends. Meet the 2016 Mirai, Toyota's first fuel cell vehicle that will go on sale starting next year in California.
The Mirai is the production version of the FCV concept that has been making the rounds for the past couple of year. The shape looks to be a mix of Prius and Corolla (we'll let you decide if that's a good thing or not). Inside, the Mirai features more influences from the Prius with a digital gauge cluster in the center of the dash and a angular center stack.
Power comes from electric motor producing 151 horsepower and peak torque of 247 pound-feet. A proprietary fuel stack combines hydrogen in tanks with oxygen to generate the electricity for the motor. Toyota claims a 0-60 MPH time of 9 seconds and travel up to 300 Miles on tank of hydrogen. Toyota also claims the Mirai can be refueled in five minutes. The Mirai will be available with a power take off (PTO) device which allows the vehicle to act as a generator if you lose power at your house.
“For us, this isn’t just another car. This is an opportunity to really make a difference. And making a difference is what Toyota is all about. The future has arrived. And it’s called Mirai,”said Toyota Global CEO Akio Toyoda.
While California will be the first market in the U.S. to get Mirai, Toyota says the Northeast (New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island) will follow a year after. But the Northeast doesn't have the infrastructure to support Mirai you may say. Well as part of the Mirai's rollout in the Northeast, fuel cell pumps will be going up thanks to a partnership between Toyota and Air Liquide.
Pricing for the 2016 Mirai starts at $57,500. Toyota says purchase price could potentially fall to under $45,000 thanks to state and federal incentives worth a total of $13,000 - though as Autoblog points out, the $8,000 federal incentive could be gone by the time the Mirai goes on sale. If you're interested in leasing, Toyota says you can lease one 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."
Press Release is on Page 2
The Toyota Mirai Brings the Future to Your Driveway
- Fuel Cell Electric Sedan Marks Turning Point for Zero-Emission Vehicles
- Range and Refuel Time Compete with Traditional Internal Combustion Engines
- World-Class, 360 Degree Ownership Experience
- Available for Sale or Lease in California Beginning Fall 2015
TORRANCE, Calif., (Nov. 17, 2014) – For the second time in a generation, Toyota has re-imagined the future of mobility.
The Toyota Mirai is a four-door, mid-size sedan with performance that fully competes with traditional internal combustion engines – but it uses no gasoline and emits nothing but water vapor. The groundbreaking fuel cell electric vehicle is powered by hydrogen, re-fuels in about five minutes, and travels up to 300 miles on a full tank.
Mirai will be available to customers in California beginning in fall 2015, with additional markets tracking the expansion of a convenient hydrogen refueling infrastructure. Powered by an industry-leading fuel cell electric drivetrain and supported by an exceptional 360-degree ownership experience, Mirai marks a turning point for consumer expectations for a zero-emission vehicle.
Making its Mark with Performance
In its basic operation, a fuel cell vehicle works much like a battery electric vehicle. But instead of the large drive battery, Mirai’s fuel cell stack combines hydrogen gas from tanks with oxygen to produce electricity that powers the electric motor.
Toyota’s proprietary fuel cell stack represents a major leap forward in performance, delivering one of the world’s best power outputs of 3.1 kW/L at a dramatically reduced size that fits under the front driver and passenger seats. The system provides Mirai with a maximum output of 153hp, accelerating from 0-60 in 9.0 seconds and delivering a passing time of 3 seconds from 25-40 mph.
What’s more, thanks to fuel cell technology’s versatility and adaptability, the Mirai offers performance options that go well beyond a traditional automobile. In fact, the vehicle will be offered with an optional power take off (PTO) device that enables Mirai to serve as a mobile generator in case of emergency. With the PTO accessory, Mirai is capable of powering home essentials in an average house for up to a week in an emergency – while emitting only water in the process.
Safe and Reliable Transportation
Toyota began fuel cell development in Japan in the early 90s and have developed a series of fuel cell vehicles, subjecting them to more than a million miles of road testing. In the last two years alone, fuel cell test vehicles have logged thousands of miles on North American roads. This includes hot testing in Death Valley, cold testing in Yellowknife, Canada, steep grade hill climbs in San Francisco and high altitude trips in Colorado. The Toyota-designed carbon fiber hydrogen tanks have also undergone extreme testing to ensure their strength and durability in a crash.
This extended legacy of research and development is reflected in Mirai’s safety and reliability. At Toyota’s advanced Higashifuji Safety Center, the vehicle has been subjected to extensive crash testing to evaluate a design specifically intended to address frontal, side and rear impacts and to provide excellent protection of vehicle occupants. A high level of collision safety has also been achieved to help protect the fuel cell stack and high-pressure tanks against body deformation.
Mirai will also feature a broad range of standard onboard safety technologies, including vehicle pre-collision, blind spot monitor, lane departure alert, drive start control and automatic high beams.
Focused on the Consumer
Toyota believes that outstanding vehicle performance must be matched by an exceptional ownership experience. And Toyota is committed to delivering on that promise.
When it hits the market in 2015, customers can take advantage of Mirai’s $499 per month/36 month lease option, with $3649 due at lease signing, or purchase the vehicle for $57,500. With combined state and federal incentives of $13,000 available to many customers, the purchase price could potentially fall to under $45,000.
The vehicle will be matched by a comprehensive, 360-degree Ownership Experience offering a range of services, including:
- 24/7 concierge service, with calls answered by a dedicated fuel cell representative;
- 24/7 enhanced roadside assistance, including towing, battery, flat tire assistance, trip interruption reimbursement, and loaner vehicle;
- Three years of Toyota Care maintenance, which covers all recommended factory maintenance, up to 12,000 miles annually;
- Eight-year/100,000-mile warranty on fuel cell components;
- Entune and three years of complimentary Safety Connect, including hydrogen station map app; and,
- Complimentary hydrogen fuel for up to three years.
Building a Convenient Refueling Infrastructure
In addition, Toyota continues to support the development of a convenient and reliable hydrogen refueling infrastructure.
Research at the University of California Irvine’s Advanced Power and Energy Program (APEP) has found that 68 stations, located at the proper sites, could handle a FCV population of at least 10,000 vehicles. Those stations are on their way to becoming a reality. By the end of 2015, 3 of California’s 9 active hydrogen stations and 17 newly-constructed stations are scheduled to be opened to the general public, with 28 additional stations set to come online by the end of 2016, bringing the near-term total to 48 stations.
Nineteen of those 48 stations will be built by FirstElement Fuels, supported by a $7.3 million loan from Toyota. The company has also announced additional efforts to develop infrastructure in the country’s Northeast region. In 2016, Air Liquide, in collaboration with Toyota, is targeting construction of 12 stations in five states – New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.