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Toyota showing latest fuel cell concept, hybrid minivan, other future mobility vehicles at Tokyo show

Toyota FCV Concept. Click to enlarge.

Toyota that it will display its latest fuel cell vehicle concept along with four other world premiere future mobility concepts at the upcoming Tokyo Motor Show. The Toyota FCV Concept is a practical concept of the fuel cell vehicle Toyota plans to launch around 2015 as a pioneer in the development of hydrogen-powered vehicles. The vehicle has a driving range of at least 500 km (311 miles) and refueling times as low as three minutes, roughly the same time as for a gasoline vehicle.

The Toyota FC Stack has a power output density of 3 kW/L, more than twice that of the current “Toyota FCHV-adv” FC Stack, and an output of at least 100 kW. In addition, the FC system is equipped with Toyota’s high-efficiency boost converter. Increasing the voltage has made it possible to reduce the size of the motor and the number of fuel cells, leading to a smaller system offering enhanced performance at reduced cost.

With Toyota’s proprietary small, light-weight FC Stack and two 70 MPa high-pressure hydrogen tanks placed beneath the specially designed body, the Toyota FCV Concept can accommodate up to four occupants.

Fully fueled, the vehicle can provide enough electricity to meet the daily needs of an average Japanese home (10 kWh) for more than one week.

Toyota suggests that the vehicle’s exterior design evokes two key characteristics of a fuel cell vehicle: the transformation of air into water as the system produces electricity, and the powerful acceleration enabled by the electric drive motor. The bold front view features pronounced air intakes, while the sleek side view conveys the air-to-water transformation with its flowing-liquid door profile and wave-motif fuel cap. The theme carries to the rear view, which conveys a catamaran’s stern and the flow of water behind.

FV2. Click to enlarge.

Toyota FV2. The Toyota FV2 is a concept car that can express Toyota’s “Fun to Drive” philosophy even in a future world in which vehicle technology has greatly progressed. The vehicle enhances the driving experience by connecting physically and emotionally with the driver, becoming more fun to drive the more it is used.

Rather than using a steering wheel, the Toyota FV2 is operated by the driver shifting his or her body to intuitively move the vehicle forward and back, left and right. In addition, by using intelligent transport system technology to connect with other vehicles in the area and traffic infrastructure, the Toyota FV2 helps enable safe driving by providing a wide variety of safety information, including advance warnings about vehicles in blind spots at intersections.

Toyota envisions an ever-developing driver-vehicle relationship similar to the relationship of trust and understanding that a rider might have with his or her horse. By incorporating technology from the “Toyota Heart Project”, both the driver and the Toyota FV2 can grow together. The vehicle uses voice and image recognition to determine the driver’s mood, accumulated driving history to suggest destinations, and driving skill information to assist the user. In addition to an augmented reality (AR) display on the windshield, the body color and exterior display can be changed at will, creating a more intimate relationship between vehicle and driver.

Toyota has created an exclusive smartphone application that enables users to experience the mobility of the future envisioned by the Toyota FV2. The application, released today, can be downloaded free of charge through the AppStore and Google Play application platforms.

JPN Taxi Concept. The JPN Taxi Concept offers ease of ingress and egress and a comfortable interior space with a body size that allows for maneuverability. The large electrically operated doors and low, flat floor enable passengers to board and exit in comfort, particularly children and seniors.

The JPN Taxi Concept uses a new, economical liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) hybrid system with excellent environmental performance optimized for taxi driving patterns.

The vehicle has been created in line with the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism’s promotion of barrier-free buses and taxis tailored to regional needs.

Voxy Concept and Noah Concept. The Voxy and Noah concepts are next-generation spacious minivans. A new low-floor package creates a roomy interior with ease of ingress and egress. These seven-seater vehicles feature ultra-long sliding Captain Seats in the second row, a first for its class, providing a diverse range of seating arrangements.

A 2.0-liter gasoline engine variant and a 1.8-liter hybrid variant with a class-first full hybrid system have been created for both the Voxy Concept and the Noah Concept. Optimal placement of the hybrid battery makes it possible to maintain the spacious utility of a minivan and achieve class-leading fuel efficiency and cruising ranges.

Market versions of the Noah and Voxy concepts are scheduled for launch in the Japanese market in early 2014.



Can Toyota deliver an affordable FCEV with 500+ Km (311 miles) range in 2015 and be the leader as it was in 1997 with affordable HEVs?

If so, equivalent extended range BEVs may have tough competition.

Installing hydrogen charging stations in selected places is not an impossible challenge, specially for FCEVs with 500+ Km range.

Domestic (home) charging stations would NOT be required.

However, using your FCEV as an emergency power source for your home for up to one week is a worthwhile advantage.


Hurray-up hydrogen, go go go... Im interrested to buy.

One thing that is not clear is what will be the price of one kilo of hydrogen at the pump and what is the mpg figures of this fuelcell car.

Roger Pham

MPGe for FCV is around 60-70, as shown by the Honda FCX Clarity for the last several years. It can only get better with the new Toyota model. With such a high mpg, a kg of H2 can cost twice as much as a gallon of gasoline, or around $6-7 per gal, and the fuel cost would still be comparable with ICEV.

Now, let's find out how much a kg of H2 would cost: By electrolysis, a kg of H2 would require 50-55 kWh of electricity. At a cost of 4-5 cents per kWh of the latest solar or wind electricity, the raw cost of energy would be only $2.0-$2.75 per kg. A H2 producer can own their own solar and wind energy producer so does not have to pay for the profit nor transmission cost of this electricity thru the grid. Adding the amortised cost of H2 electrolyzer and storage that would amount to another $0.5 and distribution, and you can see that there will be a lot of room for profit for retail H2. The profit margin can be 100% of cost and still be competitive with petroleum! This would make a great incentive for the development of H2 filling infrastructure.

In short, a kg of retail H2 may not cost any more than a gallon of gasoline, yet will carry a FCV twice as far as would an ICEV.


With 8-year children (living close to highways) dying from lung cancer, affordable FCVEs and extended range BEVs have a bright future, in China and many countries where burning fossil fuels has created high level air pollution problems.

Of course, pro-ICEVs and pro-coal fired power plants posters will never believe it.

My first wife didn't believe that smoking 20 cigarettes/day would give her non-curable lung cancer until it was too late. My second wife never smoked and we now live in a smoke free place.

Bob Wallace

"In short, a kg of retail H2 may not cost any more than a gallon of gasoline, yet will carry a FCV twice as far as would an ICEV."

US gas = $3.25/gallon - .184 federal tax = $3.06/gallon. If you didn't push the cost of H2 production and distribution unrealistically low and a FCEV can get 70 miles/gallon then that's ~4 cents per mile.

EVs using 0.3 kWh/mile and offpeak 8 cent electricity would cost ~2.5 cents per mile. That's significant and if EVs get to the "affordable 200 mile range" point first will be hard to displace.

Remember, in order to make FCEVs work there has to be an enormous amount of infrastructure spending up front. That's pretty risky if you're trying to push aside a more affordable option just to avoid an extra "fueling" stop on the occasional long distance drive.


With over 1.1B vehicle on the world's roads and streets and a strong possibility of 2.0B by 2020/2025 and another 1+B 2-wheelers, couldn't three major technologies (ICEVs, BEVs and FCEVs) co-exist for a few decades?

Of course, ICEVs will be progressively replaced by BEVs and FCEVs starting in 2020. Three (3) decades latter, ICEVs will be rare.

Bob Wallace

I suspect new ICEVs will largely disappear from dealer showrooms within ten years of an acceptable alternative.

I also suspect that ICEVs will be mostly gone 10 years after the last new one is sold. By then there should be an ample number of used BEVs and people will dump their used gasmobile for a much cheaper to operate used BEV.

Some niche products may remain, but passenger cars and light pickups are likely to be non-ICE.

As most here must realize, I'm pessimistic about FCEVs. I have nothing against them, I just can't develop any love for them. They have only one advantage that I can see. On a long trip they might get by with one ~5 minute refueling while BEVs might need a couple of ~20 minute rechargings.

The downsides of FCEV are higher per mile costs, perhaps 3x more than BEVs, and the need to refill rather than simply parking over a charging outlet.

If 200 mile range BEVs can be sold for the same price as FCEVs I think FCEVs will be an evolutionary dead branch. The only advantage they have is simply too small and the entry price of building the fueling infrastructure too high.


Hydrogen Fuel Cell really run on electrical power, which in turn comes from mostly coal and natgas. That is the problem.

Making H2 is an unnecessary and wasteful step that makes FCEV even worse than EV when it comes to CO2/mile. And EV is iin turn worse than the best hybrids and hybrid diesels.

Roger Pham

Oh, don't be ridiculous, Bob and Jus7tme!

BEV charged at nite may have to use coal baseload plants. FCV can use H2 made from intermittent solar and wind electricity whenever. When the output of solar and wind is directly connected to electrolyzers instead of made grid-compatible, the cost of solar and wind energy will be even lower!

Battery still has problem with age-related deterioration. If Lithium battery is fully charged and kept that way, it will age a lot faster. I always keep my Lithium batteries charged to under 80%-50% only in order to maintain decent battery life. This is kinda of inconvenient! If battery is charged too fast or drained too much, it will deteriorate fast!

The H2 tank has none of the above problem. It will practically last forever. When completely drained or filled, no change in calendar life. H2 tank costs 1/20th the cost of battery per kWh of capacity!

When H2 will be cheap enough, any further saving in energy cost will be moot. H2 may be more expensive than grid electricity, but the overall cost of operation of FCV may be less due to lower amortization cost of the battery vs of the H2 tank and stack. Grid electricity from RE will remain expensive due to the intermittency, necessitating grid storage, while H2 from RE will cost less because H2 obviate the needs for grid storage and the need to make the electricity grid-compatible and all the need for fine regulation and balancing of the grid to avoid grid blow-out!

Roger Pham

For example, the cost of a 100-kW FC stack is about $5k, adding the $2k cost of the H2 tank of 160 kWh, will cause a system cost of $7k. Batteries costs $400/kWh, so for a 80-kWh pack, the cost will be $32k. For a 160-kWh pack, the cost will be $64k. Ouch!

In 10 years (battery calendar life) at 150,000 miles, the amortized cost of the $32k pack will be $0.21 per mile in addition to the electricity cost per mile of about $0.04, so total energy cost per mile is $0.25.

For FCV during this same time frame, the amortized cost of the stack + tank will be less than 1/4th, so only ~5 cents/mile. Let's say that H2 will cost $4/kg that can travel 70 miles, so cost per mile for H2 will be: ~$.06/mile, adding this to the $0.05 cost of the stack and tank will get you $0.11/mile for FCV. So, you can see that FCV will cost less than 40% the cost per mile of BEV! The reason that it will cost less than the 40% is that at 10 years and 150k miles, the stack and H2 tank are still going strong and can handle another 150k miles. In that case, the amoritized cost per mile for the FC stack and tank will be only 2.5 cents/mile, and the total cost per mile will be only 8.5 cents/mile, or only 1/3rd the energy cost of BEV!

Bob Wallace

"BEV charged at nite may have to use coal baseload plants. FCV can use H2 made from intermittent solar and wind electricity whenever."

Well, Roger, that dog don't hunt. BEV can make use of "intermittent" solar and wind even better than hydrogen crackers.

You can't tell me that someone will build a H2 plant and run it only when there is sur wind/solar on the grid. They'll run it 24/365 if they can sell the power.

BEVs will need to charge only ~3 hours per day on average. That makes them a very dispatchable load and optimizes wind and solar output.

Bob Wallace

Your battery/fuel cell math has so many fat thumbs on the various scales that it's unusable.

We don't know what batteries will cost or how long they will last at the time FCEVs reach affordability.

We don't know how long a fuel cell will last, perhaps fewer years than batteries. And they could cost more to replace. More unknowns.

We do know that using electricity to produce H2 and a fuel cell to turn it back into electricity is a very lossy process. That's just the physics of the deal and they are unlikely to change.

We do know that widespread use of H2 FCEVs would require an incredibly expensive infrastructure. Very little chance of that changing.

If batteries don't get (relatively) cheap and FCEVs do then we might invest the hundreds of billions/trillions to build a H2 infrastructure.

If batteries get cheaper then it's unlikely anyone will be willing to invest in a H2 infrastructure.

We'll have to wait a while to find out how rapidly batteries and fuel cells develop. Horses are at the far turn with EVs ahead at the moment.

Roger Pham

Don't worry, Bob, the accountants and mathematicians at Toyota, GM, Ford, Daimler-Benz, Huyndai, Honda, Nissan, etc... all have done the maths related the merits of FCV vs BEV, and guess what are their finding?

FCV wins.
That's the take-home message. My simple math is just to show you the how! The cost of FC stack per kW is well known, the DOE posted it as $49/kWh, to go down to $35/kW in the next several yrs. The cost of solar PV is still going down.

Remember that the cost of solar and wind electricity dedicated for going into H2 will be quite less than the cost of solar and wind into the grid, due to the extra costs of grid transmission to each house, and the cost of grid inverter and grid balancing and grid storage and on-call NG plants standby idle unless backup is required.

H2 electrolyzers are quite cheap and can stand idle until there is solar and wind electricity flow into them. Not so for idling NG plants for backup, or grid battery storage, or other means of RE backup.


If we could get M85 into blender pumps, we could have M100 reformers with high temperature PEM fuel cells running bio methanol. Nothing says energy independence like running fuel you grow in a car that gets 60 mpg.


Combo (improved Ultra caps + FC) could become an interesting solution for heavy trucks, buses, locomotives, ships, heavy machinery, war machines etc. with enough room for large hydrogen tanks in another 10 years or so.

For most cars and light trucks, future improved batteries, level I and II home chargers and Level III and IV, 200+ kWh public charger stations may become a common solution in the same time frame?.

Having both, 200+ kWh stations and Hydrogen stations would not be much worst then current gas (4 quality), ethanol (4 to 5 mix) and diesel pumping stations.

Bob Wallace

" the accountants and mathematicians at Toyota, GM, Ford, Daimler-Benz, Huyndai, Honda, Nissan, etc... all have done the maths related the merits of FCV vs BEV, and guess what are their finding?

FCV wins. "

That's a very interesting claim. Can you show any proof?

I'd really love to read what they had to say.

Looking forward to your links....

Bob Wallace

"Remember that the cost of solar and wind electricity dedicated for going into H2 will be quite less than the cost of solar and wind into the grid, due to the extra costs of grid transmission to each house,"

Grid costs are fairly minor. And people who put solar panels on their roofs can get their electricity wholesale.

Again, I simply don't buy the idea that H2 plants will sit idle for hours and days waiting for very low priced electricity. Look at how many barrels of oil we burn per day right now with ICEVs. We'd need that sort of production were we to move to hydrogen.

Roger Pham

Actions speak louder than words. The link for the merits of FCV's lies no further than this very article. Toyota, Honda, GM, Huyndai, Daimler-Benz, Volkswagen, etc...are passionately coming out with more and more refined versions of soon-to-commercialized FCV's. The Auto MFG's are working together to introduce H2 filling infrastructure. What BEV's are Toyota, Honda, Volkswagen, and Huyndai, etc... introducing?

What H2 plants? It only takes an automated electrolyzer to produce H2 at already high intermediate pressures all in one step, to be finally compressed to 700-bar for final dispensing. The complementary nature of solar and wind allows a more even flow of energy. You can throw in it excess nuclear electricity if you don't wanna see the H2 electrolyzers to sit idle, but the H2 electrolyzers are quite cheap, so who care?

I have to remind you that it would take only 500 H2 filling stations to cover the entire continental USA, at a cost of $500,000 to $1,000,000 each, for the initial roll-out of FCV's. The total cost for all this initial infrastructure will be well under half a billion USD. This is a mere pocket change for the hundreds of billions USD spent yearly on gasoline in the USA!


Yes, an initial lot of 500 strategically located Hydrogen stations could give highway users 24/7 access (within 200 miles or so). That would be more than enough for heavy trucks and buses.

As more and more FCEVs are in use, the number of Hydrogen stations could be multiplied and selected existing ones could be enlarged, on an as required basis.

Either way, it is not a major challenge for USA's industries and even less so for smaller EU countries.

Bob Wallace

The speed at which a hydrogen infrastructure might be rolled out has nothing to do with its total cost.

US total refining capacity = 17,125,000 barrels of oil per day. Some of that product is sold out of country but most of it would need to be replaced by "automated electrolyzers".

Over 120,000 gas stations in the US. At $750,000 each that's $90,000,000,000. That should give a rough cost of building an adequate number of hydrogen stations.

Those infrastructure costs must be added to the cost of H2 fuel. And, again, making H2 from water is energy lossy so the amount of electricity input is going to be much larger than what an EV would use per mile.

Roger, perhaps my glasses need cleaning, but I've read the article at the top of the page and I can find nothing that addresses "the accountants and mathematicians at Toyota, GM, Ford, Daimler-Benz, Huyndai, Honda, Nissan, etc... all have done the maths related the merits of FCV vs BEV, and guess what are their finding? FCV wins. "

Do you have a link to back up your claim or not?

Roger Pham

It takes a communistic, top-down central-planning mindset to project 120,000 stations required for the initial roll-out of FCV's. No, Sir! We are having way too many gasoline stations due to having a free-market economy.

Imagine having a square land area of 20-mile sides in urban area with a H2 filler at the center. The maximum distance of travel of a FCV from anywhere on the periphery to the center is the mean of 10mi + 14mi = 12 miles. The mean distance travel of all vehicles within the square is only ~7.5 miles, out of a vehicle range of 300 miles. With a population density of 5000 people/sq.mi, this square having 400 sq.mi area will have a population of 5,000 x 400 = 2 million people. So, one H2 filler for 2 million people. The USA has a population of 300 million, meaning that only 150 H2 fillers will be needed in urban areas to provide a mean travel distance of 7.5 miles from home to the H2 filler.

Now, if you would put another 150 stations along highways, then you will have a total of 300 stations needed at the roll-out of FCV's. I gave you a number of 500 out of my generosity! So, you can see how little cost will be required of infrastructure for FCV's. Of course, with more FCV's in the street, more H2 fillers will be required, eventually, we may have 120,000 H2 fillers, but in a free-market society, private investments will flow in to pay for all these H2 stations that will not require a dime from the government. Of course, if you are of a communistic mindset that the gov. must pay for all these, as in a communist system, then, yes, FCV's will cost a lot of governamental resources. However, in a free-market society, the infrastructure for H2-FCV will take care of itself quite painlessly. On the contrary, private investments will create an economic boom with new jobs and new tax revenues...something that the commies will never consider!

Roger Pham

Furthermore, the lower cost of solar and wind electricity going straight to the electrolyzers in comparison to what it would cost to get the solar and wind electricity to the grid and then to the home socket, to be grid-compatible, including backup generation capacity, would compensate for the lower efficiency conversion of RE to H2. The cost of distributing electricity from the power plant to your home socket is already ~3 cents/kWh. The raw cost of solar or wind electricity now is already or will soon be only ~3-4 cents/kWh. So you can see that if a H2 producer would hook up solar PV or wind turbine output directly to the electrolyzers, the cost of electricity can be cut by nearly 1/2!!!

Not surprisingly, I've just shown you earlier that the energy cost per mile, excluding the cost of battery or FC + tank, for FCV vs BEV are comparable! What more proof can you ask for? Now, if the amortization costs of the battery and the FC stack + H2 tank are included into the cost of energy, then FCV's energy cost will beat BEV's energy cost by over 2:1 ratio!!! What more convincing do you need in order to understand the merits of FCV vs BEV?

Bob, you'll need more than just clean up your eye glasses. You'll need to seriously meditate and to purge your mind of preconceived notions, prejudices, preformed order for the truth to start flowing in! Inhale...Exhale...Repeat...Feel better already?

Roger Pham

Correction on population density on previous posting:
My previous number of 5000/sq.mi population density is a bit high, considering the urban sprawls of south and southwestern areas of USA. A number of perhaps 1,600 people/sq.mi is more realistic. In that case there will require 450 H2 fillers in urban and suburban areas, while adding to that 150 fillers for major hwys at every 30-50 mile distance, will give a total of 600 H2 fillers at the roll out of FCV's. At a median cost of $750,000 per H2 filler will give a total cost of: 450 million USD. Still pocket change in comparison to the sheer hundreds of Billions USD spent on petroleum yearly!


RP.. Heavily populated areas would quickly need many more hydrogen stations to avoid bottle necks and long waiting lines but it can be done without much government assistance.

Progressively converting 50% of existing highway gas/diesel stations to Hydrogen should not be much a commercial challenge in USA, Japan, S-Korea, China and EU and other industrial nations?


A PHEV using ultracaps/batteries and FC as a range extender could be an interesting solution, specially for larger VUS and Pick-ups?

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