Toyota vows to take zero-emission fuel cell electric vehicle technology to “new heights” with the upcoming second-generation Mirai concept, expected to debut in December.
The Japanese carmaker made history in 2014 by unveiling its first hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, and now an updated version is coming soon.
A fuel cell vehicle uses hydrogen to generate electricity by separating electrons from hydrogen atoms, using the electricity produced to power the electric motor. This is a net-zero emission process (provided the hydrogen is produced from renewable sources) that only emits water vapor as a byproduct of the chemical reaction.
So far, only a handful of details have been revealed about the new Mirai — it’s wider, longer, and sits 2.6 inches lower.
The 2019 concept sports a major re-design that features smooth lines and a very Lexus-ish front end. On the inside, the concept gets a bigger 12.3-inch touch screen infotainment display, a 14-speaker JBL sound system, good-quality leather seats, wireless charging, in-car WiFi, and a seating capacity of 5 people.
The company has also said that unlike its predecessor, the new Mirai will be rear-wheel drive, more powerful, and with approximately 30 percent more range, thanks to larger on-board hydrogen tanks.
For Toyota, the Mirai is an exciting new car — not an FCEV, but a car that was designed to deliver a great driving experience, besides being kind to the polar bears in the process.
“We have pursued the goal of making a car that customers will feel they want to drive at all times, a car that has an emotional and attractive design and the kind of dynamic and responsive performance that can bring a smile to the driver’s face. I want customers to say, ‘I chose the Mirai not because it’s an FCEV, but because I love how it looks and performs; it just happens to be an FCEV,” said Yoshikazu Tanaka, new Mirai’s Chief Engineer.