Toyota Mirai: The World's First Commercial Hydrogen Car
When theoretical physicist Michio Kaku stepped onto the stage, it was clear that Toyota's CES conference was going to be interesting. The media-savvy scientist is a frequent TV presence, usually in shows or news segments where he outlines the brighter future that science and tech will make possible. In this case, he was here to introduce the last thing anyone expected to debut at CES: a production-ready hydrogen car. The Mirai isn't a concept vehicle or prototype. It's a real car, with a range of 300 miles per hydrogen refuel, a process that Kaku said takes 3 to 5 minutes — exponentially faster than recharging a battery-electric car. The sedan can hit 60 mph in 9 seconds, and has a feature normally associated with electric vehicles: the ability to output electricity, enough to run a fridge during a power outage. The Mirai represents some 20 years of internally-funded R&D at Toyota, and the company is paying millions more to install hydrogen fueling stations in the Northeast of the U.S. (along with lending money to a West Coast utility to do the same). It's hard to believe we're writing this, but the world's first commercial hydrogen car will be available in October for around $50,000.
[Toyota Mirai Hydrogen Car; toyota.com]