While much of the media remains fixated on electric cars and most especially Tesla, Toyota is moving to make fuel cell vehicles more affordable. The auto giant has a plan in action that would make a price parity between its crop of hybrids and hydrogen fuel cell equivalents, according to Matt Harrison, Toyota head of sales for Europe.
That probably sounds far-fetched because the only Toyota fuel-cell vehicle for sale now, the Mirai, is anything but cheap. The midsize sedan has an MSRP of $58,500 in the U.S., which is a steep price tag for that kind of vehicle.
According to Harrison, a second-generation Toyota fuel-cell vehicle is coming soon. It will deflate the cost of the tech significantly. A third-generation wave should arrive within 10 years’ time, and that’s when getting a fuel-cell model will cost the same as buying a hybrid, if all goes as planned.
Keep in mind, Toyota is a mastermind planner. It was the company that made hybrids affordable and popular. Set aside your feelings about that Prius driver who always goes slow in the left lane for a moment so you can see objectively that if anyone can make a new drivetrain technology cheap and practical, it’s Toyota.
Electric car fans have been annoyed with the Japanese automaker for not getting on the EV bandwagon. While Toyota is preparing more EVs beyond the few it has produced, the effort still seems lacking in vigor. There must be something, probably multiple somethings, Toyota knows that it doesn’t want to announce to the world, at least not yet.
Source: Automotive News Europe