As both Toyota and Honda are readying to rollout fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) in 2015, the Japanese government has announced rebates of $20,000 USD per car. So, for instance, a Toyota Mirai with a sticker price of $68,000 USD would actually cost around $48,000 USD in Japan.
According to the Herald Sun, “Japan is readying subsidies to help Toyota Motor Corp and key suppliers take the lead in hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles that could top $US400 million over the next several years if the most bullish projections for the technology play out.
“Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s planned consumer rebates of at least $US20,000 per vehicle would be the largest government support plan for hydrogen vehicles yet, raising the stakes for a commercially unproven technology with roots in the space race that Toyota and others see headed for the mainstream over the coming decades …
“…Besides Toyota, Honda also plans to start selling its fuel cell vehicle in 2015. Automakers including General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co have been working on fuel cells for years and Daimler AG (DAIGn.DE) and Hyundai Motor Co lease fuel cell cars in the United States, but so far there are no plans for sales in Japan. That means the subsidy will be offered exclusively to Toyota and Honda for the time being.”
For several years now, early adopters have been clamoring for a commercial hydrogen car selling at or under the $50,000 mark. With the temporary subsidies in place, Japanese consumers will have their wishes granted in as little as 8 months from now.