Toyota sends new hydrogen model into clean car market

Japanese carmaker Toyota has unveiled its latest model – powered by hydrogen.
Photo: Naomi Tajitsu/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix
Photo: Naomi Tajitsu/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix

Toyota raises its ante in the clean car market with the launch of new hydrogen car model.

The new make is an adaption of the Mirai model, which can hold more H2 in the tank and thus has a 30 percent longer range than its predecessor's 502 kilometers, reports CNN.

The car will be available for purchase from late 2020.

Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles emit only water vapor and function by storing compressed hydrogen gas in a fuel tank, which then releases the H2 through a fuel cell, which combines the element with atmospheric oxygen, forming H2O and generating an electrical change. The technology therefore emits no CO2 at the point of use.

Limited refilling infrastructure is a major obstacle for widespread adoption of hydrogen vehicles. Moreover, separating the element into its pure gaseous state also requires energy, whether as gray hydrogen derived from natural gas or green H2 from water by means of electrolysis. Here, power sources driving this process are not necessarily climate-friendly.

Beyond its hydrogen cars, Toyota also manufactures electric cars, but the group still lags far behind EV market leaders Tesla and Volkswagen.

Whereas Tesla sold 220,000 EVs last year, Toyota electric car sales totaled to a mere 1,000, reports CNN.

English Edit: Daniel Frank Christensen

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