Toyota Reaffirms Hydrogen Engine Commitment

Thu 10th Jun 2021

Less than a week after setting a new range record for a low emission car, Toyota have once again made strong claims about the future of hydrogen engines.

And the Japanese company’s CEO, Akio Toyoda, has warned that politicians should stay out of conversations on what defines a carbon neutral, particularly as the world is seemingly being railroaded down the path of electric battery vehicles.

Toyota have been at the heart of the sustainable and low-carbon emission vehicle ever since launching the Prius hybrid 15 years ago, and now with the Toyota Mirai leading the way with hydrogen power - it is an uncomfortable elephant in the room for those looking at the future of motors.

“The ultimate goal is carbon neutrality,” Toyoda said in an interview with Automotive News. “It shouldn't be about rejecting hybrids and gasoline cars and only selling fuel cells and battery-electric cars. We want to expand the choices available in the path to carbon neutrality. This is the first step.”

While the Mirai is currently available providing hydrogen as a solution to those who are interested, there are a number of barriers, particularly a lack of fueling stations, and the actual cost of pressurised hydrogen compared to the seemingly cheaper electric option. 

And while the debate will rage on electric versus hydrogen versus combustion engines, the head analyst Nakanishi Research Institute says that Toyota is investigating every possibility in engine design.

“Toyota isn't doing this because it's behind in EVs,” Takaki Nakanishi said. “Toyota's doing this to save Japan's auto industry and its domestic supply chain. This is a performance by Toyoda to influence policy in a better direction.”