Toyota is now teasing us with more FCV details about the car they will fully unveil at the Tokyo Motor Show between Nov. 20 – December 1, 2013. On October 16, 2013, I had talked about the foil disguised FCV concept car that Toyota said would be close to the final iteration available for purchase in 2015. Now Toyota has unveiled the design of the vehicle (see above).
According to Toyota, “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 and refueling times as low as three minutes, roughly the same time as for a gasoline vehicle.
“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 …
“… 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.”
Toyota goes onto say that the vehicle will carry two 70 MPa hydrogen tanks and can carry four passengers comfortably. The new Toyota FCV Concept is an upgrade from the FCV-R that the company has been showing since the 2012 Tokyo Motor Show.
Because of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami (and the recent Fukushima earthquakes), the Japanese government has been focusing on alternative emergency energy in case of another disaster. One of the key features of the new Toyota FCV is that when the fuel tank is full, it can power the average Japanese household for one week.