Toyota FCV-R concept
Dubbed by Toyota as "the ultimate hybrid car", the FCV-R concept is set to preview an upcoming hydrogen fuel cell-powered hybrid production vehicle due to be launched in 2015.
A four-door zero-emission sedan measuring 4745mm long, 1790mm wide and 1510mm tall – 285mm longer, 45mm wider and 20mm taller than a Toyota Prius – the new concept is an evolution of the FCV-R concept first seen at the 2011 Tokyo motor show.
The Japanese manufacturer’s first hydrogen fuel cell production car’s powerplant will comprise the same electrical components as those currently used in full hybrid models partnered with an electric motor, smaller fuel cell stack, two high-pressure hydrogen tanks and a 21kW battery that stores kinetic energy recovered under braking.
Toyota claims a range of up to 830km, performance comparable to petrol and diesel vehicles, maximised cabin and luggage space due to locating the hydrogen tanks and fuel cell stack under the vehicle floor, and the sole emission of water vapour.
Though currently projecting a production car price of less than 10 million yen ($113,000), Toyota says it is aiming to further reduce costs before bringing the vehicle to the Japanese, US and European markets.
Touting fuel cell hybrid vehicles as the logical continuation of the hybrid car, the car maker says it expects the cars to achieve full, mass-market commercialisation by the 2020s and is aspiring to see annual sales in the tens of thousands.
Further, its says market growth will be boosted by the further roll-out of fuel cell vehicle technology, the increased availability of hydrogen refuelling stations and the reduction in costs accompanied with any maturing technology.
Cumulative global sales of Toyota and Lexus hybrids exceeded 5.5 million units in April this year.