Jump to content
William Maley

Toyota News: Toyota Double Downs Investment On Hydrogen

Recommended Posts

Toyota is planning a big push with hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. According to Reuters, the Japanese automaker is doubling-down on investments for fuel cell vehicles by making improvements to reduce costs and building different models including commercial trucks.

“We’re going to shift from limited production to mass production, reduce the amount of expensive materials like platinum used in FCV components, and make the system more compact and powerful,” said Yoshikazu Tanaka, chief engineer of the Mirai.

Currently, Toyota hand builds the Mirai at a plant in Toyota City. Everyday, about 6.5 cars roll out of the plant. This is due to the detailed inspections that partially assembled models go through. The parts comprising the Mirai are quite expensive as well. According to analysis done by Strategic Analysis Inc., it costs Toyota about $11,000 to produce each of the fuel cell stacks. Blame the use of the platinum, titanium, and carbon fiber for the stacks.

Toyota has been building up production capacity as it expects sales of FCVs to increase from about 3,000 to over 20,000 after 2020. This will help reduce the cost of each fuel cell stack to $8,000.

“It will be difficult for Toyota to lower FCV production costs if it only produces the Mirai,” said a source,

That's where an expansion of FCVs come in. Toyota is planning a "phased introduction' of other FCVs, including SUVs and commercial trucks starting around 2025. Toyota declined to talk about future products, but did reveal that it has built prototypes of small delivery vehicles and transport trucks with fuel cell powertrains.

“We’re going to use as many parts from existing passenger cars and other models as possible in fuel cell trucks. Otherwise, we won’t see the benefits of mass production,” said Ikuo Ota, manager of new business planning for fuel cell projects at Toyota.

Why is Toyota doubling down on fuel cells? Sources say that Toyota believes demand will increase as more countries, including China "warm to fuel cell technology". The company also sees FCVs as a hedge against battery materials such as cobalt becoming scarce.

But there is still one issue that Toyota, and other automakers build FCVs still need to solve; infrastructure. There aren't many hydrogen refueling stations around. For example, the majority of hydrogen stations in the U.S. are in California. Not helping is a current shortage of hydrogen at refueling stations in California. Green Car Reports says this issue is due to various problems with supplier Air Products. The company said that it hopes to restore hydrogen supplies sometime in early August.

Source: Reuters, Green Car Reports


View full article

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I totally get the green side of emission on a Hydrogen auto. Yet I still see this as a big negative also since it takes way more energy to produce the Hydrogen fuel. So one must question the long term nature of Hydrogen auto's.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fuel cells make great sense for city dwellers, small delivery vehicles, taxis, and other livery.   You can have a hydrogen generator in your garage and hydrogen can be generated from renewable sources, so its efficiency is less of a concern. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

Fuel cells make great sense for city dwellers, small delivery vehicles, taxis, and other livery.   You can have a hydrogen generator in your garage and hydrogen can be generated from renewable sources, so its efficiency is less of a concern. 

I get the renewable source for energy, having a small hydrogen generator in the garage is a challenge coming from a person who sold home CNG fueling equipment. RIght now your looking at an overnight fueling refill of a compressed hydrogen tank with high cost for the equipment up front. I am skeptical of a person wanting to pay 6 to 10K for a home fueling system without big rebates from the gov.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, dfelt said:

I get the renewable source for energy, having a small hydrogen generator in the garage is a challenge coming from a person who sold home CNG fueling equipment. RIght now your looking at an overnight fueling refill of a compressed hydrogen tank with high cost for the equipment up front. I am skeptical of a person wanting to pay 6 to 10K for a home fueling system without big rebates from the gov.

You took garage the wrong way.  I'm thinking more like a taxi garage or a mid-size plumbing firm that maybe has 5 or 6 Sienna Commercial Vans.

If you told the business owner that he/she could erase their fuel costs for the next 10 - 15 years with an upfront check of $10k (assuming the vehicle purchases would be a wash) that should be a fairly easy check to write.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is such a thing as a 'Sienna Commercial van'? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's way out there but I think hydrogen is the way of the future... They're way behind on current technology but it'll come along one day. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
32 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

You took garage the wrong way.  I'm thinking more like a taxi garage or a mid-size plumbing firm that maybe has 5 or 6 Sienna Commercial Vans.

If you told the business owner that he/she could erase their fuel costs for the next 10 - 15 years with an upfront check of $10k (assuming the vehicle purchases would be a wash) that should be a fairly easy check to write.

Got it, totally zoned on the business garage and that makes even more sense.

I wonder what ever happened to Honda and their Home Garage fueling station that was all the rage in 2007.

http://www.hydrogencarsnow.com/index.php/home-hydrogen-fueling-stations/

honda-home-h2-filling-station.jpg

Now I will say I like this company's products:

http://www.hydrogenhouseproject.org/index.html

They have a Solar Hydrogen Fuel Cell electric lawn mower, Solar Hydrogen Fuel Cell Off-road EV, the cool part is the portable Joule box that can be used to keep your house fully in the power. Check it out.

Sadly, while there was allot of concepts for home Hydrogen fueling, it has all died out due to EVs. I could only find the company above that seems to be building a unit that could be used for home fueling.

16 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

It's way out there but I think hydrogen is the way of the future... They're way behind on current technology but it'll come along one day. 

Questionable if in my lifetime. :P All the rage in 2007 to 2012 and now dead compared to EV. So it will be interesting to see how Toyota gets this jump started as it is going to cost companies that go this route some big dollars to have hydrogen fueling equipment in places that their fleet can access and use it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
55 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

There is such a thing as a 'Sienna Commercial van'? 

I made it up. But you got the idea of what I am trying to say while keeping it Toyota. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
31 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

I made it up. But you got the idea of what I am trying to say while keeping it Toyota. 

Yes...given how huge Toyota is, I'm surprised they haven't gotten into the commercial van space in the US like Nissan has done w/ the NVs...

A US market version of the Hiace would be cool.  And imagine how badazz one of these would look w/ the Lexus predator grille, sharp angles, squinty lights, and 22 inch wheels..(though the JDM Alphard van looks pretty Lexus-ish these days..)

hiace-front-view.png

Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
58 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

There is such a thing as a 'Sienna Commercial van'? 

Makes total sense with Toyota expanding their Hydrogen options that they would have a commercial van running on hydrogen even though it is a floating idea that Drew through out there.

Toyota should pay Drew for the idea of a hydrogen commercial van. :P 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Who's Online   0 Members, 0 Anonymous, 34 Guests (See full list)

    There are no registered users currently online



  • Similar Content

    • By William Maley
      I’m one of the few people who actually like the current Toyota Prius - I named it one of my favorite vehicles last year. It offers excellent fuel economy and noticeable improvements to the interior and handling. So what happens when you add a plug to it? You end up with the Prius Prime which is much better than the last-generation Prius Plug-In and makes for an interesting alternative to Chevrolet Volt if you happen to be on a budget.
      The regular Prius was already a model that you either loved or hated the design. The Prime only exacerbates this as it comes with new front and rear styling to set it apart. The front end gets a new black treatment for the middle that makes it look like it is wearing a mask to hide its identity. A set of quad-LED headlights come from the Mirai and makes the Prime look futuristic. The back features a new tailgate design with what Toyota calls a “dual wave.” It may look ridiculous when put next to the standard Prius, but I dig it. One more thing about the rear tailgate; it happens to made out of carbon fiber to help reduce some weight out of the Prime. The weight loss is not really that impressive as the tailgate only drops 8 pounds from the curb weight. Move inside and the Prime is mostly similar to the Prius I drove last year with an abundance of soft-touch materials, color screens for the instrument cluster, and comfortable front seats. The key differences? You’ll only find seating for two in the back and cargo space is slightly smaller (19.8 vs. 24.6 cubic feet) due to the larger battery taking up some of the precious cargo space. One key item Toyota is proud of in the Prius Prime is an 11.6-inch, vertical touchscreen that controls many of the vehicle’s function such as navigation, audio, and climate control. But you may notice our test Prime doesn’t have it. That’s because the larger screen is only available on the Premium and Advanced models. The base Plus sticks with the 7-inch touchscreen with Entune. From reviews I have been reading about the Prime with the larger screen, it is a mess. The user interface is a bit of mess, performance is meh, and the screen washes out when sunlight hits it. The 7-inch system doesn’t have all of these issues - aside from the sunlight one. Entune may look a little bit dated, but the interface is easy to wrap your head around and performance is pretty snappy. The Prime’s powertrain is the same as the standard Prius; 1.8L Atkinson-Cycle four-cylinder engine and two electric motors/generators producing a total output of 121 horsepower and 105 pound-feet of torque. Where it differs is the battery. The Prime comes with a 95-cell, 8.8-kWh Lithium-ion battery pack. This allows for 25 miles of electric motoring - 14 miles more than the last-generation Prius Plug-In. In electric mode, the Prius Prime feels confident when leaving a stop as the electric motors provide that immediate thrust of power. This is a vehicle that will make other drivers question their thoughts about the Prius. When the Prime is put into the hybrid mode, it feels and goes like a slower Prius. A lot of this is due to extra weight brought on the larger battery - about 300 pounds. You will notice the vehicle taking a few ticks longer to get up speed, especially on hills or merging on to a freeway. How much range was I able to squeeze out of the Prime? I was able to travel between 24 to 27 miles on EV power. Average fuel economy landed around 75 mpg with mostly city driving. When I first got the Prius Prime, I had to plug it in to get the battery charged up. On a 120V outlet, it took 5 hours and 30 minutes to recharged - exactly the time listed by Toyota. If you have a 240V charger, a full recharge only takes 2 hours and 10 minutes on 240V When the battery is halfway depleted, it took about 2 hours and 30 minutes to fully recharge. The Prius was quite a shock when I drove it last year as it drove surprisingly well. It provided decent handling and the steering felt somewhat natural. The same is true for the Prime.  You would think after four-generations of the Prius, Toyota would have finally figured out how to make the regenerative brakes feel like brakes in a standard car. But this isn’t the case. Like in the Prius I drove last year, the Prime exhibited brakes that felt numb and having to push further on the pedal to bring the vehicle to a stop. The Toyota Prius Prime is a huge improvement over the old the Prius Plug-In Hybrid as it offers a better EV range, short recharging time, and a much nicer interior. The exterior will put some people off and Toyota still needs to work on improving the Prius’ brakes. We have to address the elephant in the room, the Chevrolet Volt. The Volt does offer a longer range (53 miles), much better brakes, and a sharper exterior. The Prius Prime fights back with a larger interior, shorter recharging times, and low price. If I had the money, I would be picking up a Volt Premier as I think it is the slightly better vehicle. But if I only had $30,000 to spend and wanted something fuel efficient, the Prius Prime would be at the top of the list. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the Prius Prime, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Toyota
      Model: Prius Prime
      Trim: Plus
      Engine: 1.8L DOHC, VVT-i Atkinson Cycle Four-Cylinder, Two Electric Motors
      Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, ECVT
      Horsepower @ RPM: 95 @ 5,200 (Gas), 71 @ 0 (Electric), 121 (Combined)
      Torque @ RPM: 105 @ 5,200 (Gas), 120 @ 0 (Electric)
      Fuel Economy: Electric + Gas, Hybrid City/Highway/Combined -  133 MPGe, 55/53/54
      Curb Weight: 3,365 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Aichi, Japan
      Base Price: $27,100
      As Tested Price: $28,380 (Includes $885.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Special Color (Hypersonic Red) - $595.00

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      I’m one of the few people who actually like the current Toyota Prius - I named it one of my favorite vehicles last year. It offers excellent fuel economy and noticeable improvements to the interior and handling. So what happens when you add a plug to it? You end up with the Prius Prime which is much better than the last-generation Prius Plug-In and makes for an interesting alternative to Chevrolet Volt if you happen to be on a budget.
      The regular Prius was already a model that you either loved or hated the design. The Prime only exacerbates this as it comes with new front and rear styling to set it apart. The front end gets a new black treatment for the middle that makes it look like it is wearing a mask to hide its identity. A set of quad-LED headlights come from the Mirai and makes the Prime look futuristic. The back features a new tailgate design with what Toyota calls a “dual wave.” It may look ridiculous when put next to the standard Prius, but I dig it. One more thing about the rear tailgate; it happens to made out of carbon fiber to help reduce some weight out of the Prime. The weight loss is not really that impressive as the tailgate only drops 8 pounds from the curb weight. Move inside and the Prime is mostly similar to the Prius I drove last year with an abundance of soft-touch materials, color screens for the instrument cluster, and comfortable front seats. The key differences? You’ll only find seating for two in the back and cargo space is slightly smaller (19.8 vs. 24.6 cubic feet) due to the larger battery taking up some of the precious cargo space. One key item Toyota is proud of in the Prius Prime is an 11.6-inch, vertical touchscreen that controls many of the vehicle’s function such as navigation, audio, and climate control. But you may notice our test Prime doesn’t have it. That’s because the larger screen is only available on the Premium and Advanced models. The base Plus sticks with the 7-inch touchscreen with Entune. From reviews I have been reading about the Prime with the larger screen, it is a mess. The user interface is a bit of mess, performance is meh, and the screen washes out when sunlight hits it. The 7-inch system doesn’t have all of these issues - aside from the sunlight one. Entune may look a little bit dated, but the interface is easy to wrap your head around and performance is pretty snappy. The Prime’s powertrain is the same as the standard Prius; 1.8L Atkinson-Cycle four-cylinder engine and two electric motors/generators producing a total output of 121 horsepower and 105 pound-feet of torque. Where it differs is the battery. The Prime comes with a 95-cell, 8.8-kWh Lithium-ion battery pack. This allows for 25 miles of electric motoring - 14 miles more than the last-generation Prius Plug-In. In electric mode, the Prius Prime feels confident when leaving a stop as the electric motors provide that immediate thrust of power. This is a vehicle that will make other drivers question their thoughts about the Prius. When the Prime is put into the hybrid mode, it feels and goes like a slower Prius. A lot of this is due to extra weight brought on the larger battery - about 300 pounds. You will notice the vehicle taking a few ticks longer to get up speed, especially on hills or merging on to a freeway. How much range was I able to squeeze out of the Prime? I was able to travel between 24 to 27 miles on EV power. Average fuel economy landed around 75 mpg with mostly city driving. When I first got the Prius Prime, I had to plug it in to get the battery charged up. On a 120V outlet, it took 5 hours and 30 minutes to recharged - exactly the time listed by Toyota. If you have a 240V charger, a full recharge only takes 2 hours and 10 minutes on 240V When the battery is halfway depleted, it took about 2 hours and 30 minutes to fully recharge. The Prius was quite a shock when I drove it last year as it drove surprisingly well. It provided decent handling and the steering felt somewhat natural. The same is true for the Prime.  You would think after four-generations of the Prius, Toyota would have finally figured out how to make the regenerative brakes feel like brakes in a standard car. But this isn’t the case. Like in the Prius I drove last year, the Prime exhibited brakes that felt numb and having to push further on the pedal to bring the vehicle to a stop. The Toyota Prius Prime is a huge improvement over the old the Prius Plug-In Hybrid as it offers a better EV range, short recharging time, and a much nicer interior. The exterior will put some people off and Toyota still needs to work on improving the Prius’ brakes. We have to address the elephant in the room, the Chevrolet Volt. The Volt does offer a longer range (53 miles), much better brakes, and a sharper exterior. The Prius Prime fights back with a larger interior, shorter recharging times, and low price. If I had the money, I would be picking up a Volt Premier as I think it is the slightly better vehicle. But if I only had $30,000 to spend and wanted something fuel efficient, the Prius Prime would be at the top of the list. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the Prius Prime, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Toyota
      Model: Prius Prime
      Trim: Plus
      Engine: 1.8L DOHC, VVT-i Atkinson Cycle Four-Cylinder, Two Electric Motors
      Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, ECVT
      Horsepower @ RPM: 95 @ 5,200 (Gas), 71 @ 0 (Electric), 121 (Combined)
      Torque @ RPM: 105 @ 5,200 (Gas), 120 @ 0 (Electric)
      Fuel Economy: Electric + Gas, Hybrid City/Highway/Combined -  133 MPGe, 55/53/54
      Curb Weight: 3,365 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Aichi, Japan
      Base Price: $27,100
      As Tested Price: $28,380 (Includes $885.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Special Color (Hypersonic Red) - $595.00
    • By William Maley
      In a few weeks time, Mazda will be revealing to the next-generation Mazda3 compact which will sport the automaker's new Skyactiv-X powertrain. This new powertrain uses compression ignition that allows for improved fuel economy and emissions. But that's not all according to Automotive News.
      Akira Marumoto, Mazda Motor Corp. CEO revealed that Skyactiv-X would be tamed with a mild-hybrid system. Not many details were provided except that the system would feature a lithium-ion battery pack. The mild-hybrid setup will provide "spirited, linear acceleration without hesitation or hiccups" according to Marumoto.
      "After driving just 20 or 30 meters, you notice the difference. There is linearity, no abruptness. Drivers and passengers don't feel uncomfortable or stressed," said Marumoto.
      But as Automotive News points out, launching this new powertrain in a segment that is seeing sales drop may cause a delay in the recouping of investments. Despite being Mazda's second-best selling model in the U.S., it trails other compact cars in terms of sales like the Honda Civic and Chevrolet Cruze. Marumoto defended the decision to launch Skyactiv-X into the Mazda3, explaining that the model produces large volumes at the global level. Marumoto also hinted that this setup could launch in an SUV. "
    • By William Maley
      In a few weeks time, Mazda will be revealing to the next-generation Mazda3 compact which will sport the automaker's new Skyactiv-X powertrain. This new powertrain uses compression ignition that allows for improved fuel economy and emissions. But that's not all according to Automotive News.
      Akira Marumoto, Mazda Motor Corp. CEO revealed that Skyactiv-X would be tamed with a mild-hybrid system. Not many details were provided except that the system would feature a lithium-ion battery pack. The mild-hybrid setup will provide "spirited, linear acceleration without hesitation or hiccups" according to Marumoto.
      "After driving just 20 or 30 meters, you notice the difference. There is linearity, no abruptness. Drivers and passengers don't feel uncomfortable or stressed," said Marumoto.
      But as Automotive News points out, launching this new powertrain in a segment that is seeing sales drop may cause a delay in the recouping of investments. Despite being Mazda's second-best selling model in the U.S., it trails other compact cars in terms of sales like the Honda Civic and Chevrolet Cruze. Marumoto defended the decision to launch Skyactiv-X into the Mazda3, explaining that the model produces large volumes at the global level. Marumoto also hinted that this setup could launch in an SUV. "

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Toyota isn't immune to the falling sales of passenger vehicles as more buyers trend towards trucks and SUVs. In the first ten months of this year, cars are down 11.1 percent. Meanwhile, trucks are up 7.7 percent. This has the Japanese automaker considering dropping some models.
      "We are taking a hard look at all of the segments that we compete in to make sure we are competing in profitable segments and that products we sell have strategic value," said Jim Lentz, Toyota's North America CEO after the automaker reported an increase in quarterly profits.
      Unlike Ford which is revamping its lineup to changing consumer tastes, Toyota isn't planning to "abandon passenger cars," instead "scrutinizing offerings in some areas, such as convertibles or coupes." No mention was made of the models on the chopping block, but we have a possible few candidates.
      Yaris: Sales have dropped 38 percent this year Prius C : Not big a seller and hasn't really been updated aside from the 2018 model Pruis C we reviewed last month. Lexus RC: Sales down 52 percent so far in 2018 Lexus GS: Been long rumored to be heading to the gallows
  • My Clubs

  • Recently Browsing

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Reader Rides

About us

CheersandGears.com - Founded 2001

We ♥ Cars

Get in touch

Follow us

Recent tweets

facebook

×