Toyota will launch its new Fuel Cell Vehicle on April 2015 in Japan and “in the summer of 2015” in Europe and the US. There are no plans to bring the FCV to Australia and New Zealand we currently don’t have the infrastructure yet but as this will be the first mass-produced fuel cell car, and by Toyota no less, as other manufactures follow suit supply will no doubt keep up with demand.
The FCV bears a striking resemblance to the original concept car shown at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show. The designers have gone for a bold and futuristic look that’ll also cut through the air as cleanly as possible reducing unnecessary drag. Measuring up to 4.8m it’s closer in size to a Camry than a Prius. I won’t go in too much detail about the design, make of it what you will, but you certainly wouldn’t mistake it for a Camry. Few people will buy it for its design though. The main drawing point to the FCV is its green credentials.
For those of you who are unsure of how fuel cell vehicles work, essentially they have their own power station. Using the result of the reaction between hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity to power the electric motors, the FCV is a greener way of producing zero emissions compared to a conventional electric vehicle. The only by-product of the FCV, for science majors out there, is water or H20.
What’s even better is the range. Toyota claim the FCV has a 700km range, considerably more than the 100-200km average range of the current crop of EVs. And unlike EVs which require hours to fully charge, the FCV should only take the same amount of time to fill up with hydrogen as a normal petrol powered car. Toyota say around 3 minutes. Of course this being new technology it won’t be cheap. Prices in Japan are expected to start from ¥7,000,000 (NZ$78,458).