Nothing official has been announced for now.
Hydrogen could fuel bigger Toyota vehicles.
Toyota revealed a hydrogen-powered HiAce van prototype.
Toyota is one of a very short list of automotive brands that refuses to switch exclusively to electric power. In fact, it could be argued that the Japanese giant is lagging the competition in this respect. On the other hand, Toyota’s portfolio is quite extensive when it comes to hybrid, plug-in hybrid and even hydrogen-powered vehicles.
Admittedly, the Toyota Mirai is not a commercial success, with the automaker using mainly its large sedan as a technological showcase. At present, hydrogen isn’t exactly a popular solution with the various automotive divisions around the world, but it appears that Toyota wants to do a lot more to push the technology, whether it’s on board a vehicle that runs on hydrogen but relies on an electric motor or, in the opposite case, that the alternative fuel is directly involved in the propulsion of a combustion engine.
At the unveiling of a hydrogen-powered HiAce van prototype in Australia, the president of Toyota’s hydrogen wing, Mitsumasa Yamagata, revived the possibility of the automaker using hydrogen as a fuel to power larger vehicles used to towing, such as the Land Cruiser.
The type of engine envisioned for these larger hydrogen-powered vehicles remains unknown, but the HiAce van uses a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 mated to a hydrogen tank borrowed from the Mirai. However, it’s not impossible that the 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 engine would also be considered for this kind of use. In fact, the head of hydrogen vehicles also told drive.com.au journalist’s that the possibility of finding the same kind of configuration as in the Mirai sedan was also possible.
Currently, Toyota is certainly looking into the possibility of integrating hydrogen aboard one of the versions of its Land Cruiser, the 4×4 being marketed all over the world. It remains to be seen what the engineers will come up with next.
Let’s bet that the Land Cruiser Se concept, revealed at the Tokyo Mobility Show just a few weeks ago, also has something to say in the equation, the vehicle that relied on electric powertrains.