Toyota Wants $50,000 Hydrogen Sedan by 2015

Toyota-fchv-fuel-cell-car
Toyota wants to introduce a hydrogen fuel-cell sedan to its lineup by 2015 with a sticker price of around $50,000. The car will have zero emissions and the range and refueling time of a gas-powered vehicle, giving it an advantage over an electric car.

Toyota says the price is possible because the cost of making fuel-cell vehicles has fallen by 90% in the past decade, and the automaker says it can save more money by cutting the amount of platinum used in the fuel cells and moving from low-volume assembly to mass production. Originally, building a hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle cost Toyota roughly $1 million.

“Our target is, we don’t lose money with introduction of the vehicle. Production cost should be covered within the price of the vehicle,” Yoshihiko Masuda, Toyota’s managing director for advanced autos, told Bloomberg News.

Of course, customers have to buy that vehicle as well. The prospects of a $50,000 car with limited options for refueling seem suspect right now. It’s possible that by 2015 some kind of bare-bones hydrogen infrastructure could develop in some regions of the country, but even if Toyota gets the cost of a vehicle down to $50,000, many hurdles remain before hydrogen adoption begins on any significant scale.

Even Masuda admitted that the market for the fuel-cell sedan would at first be “small, but with some support.” GM, Mazda and Honda have been on the hydrogen path for some time, but the nearly non-existent infrastructure in the U.S. has prevented retail thoughts ... along with the nearly $1 million cost for their vehicles as well.

Toyota Plans $50,000 Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Sedan by 2015 (Bloomberg)

Comments 

Dan

Since hydrogen will have to be generated using electricity, it will always be more expensive to fill a hydrogen energy storage car than a battery energy storage car.

It will be interesting to see if people are willing to pay more for the shorter, on-the-go-refill time.

Amuro Ray

I may be wrong on this, but didn't Obama just scrapped...well, last yr I think...Bush's plan on building a hydrogen fuel cell infrastructure? Boy, it will again take many, MANY years, to put it into laws and have the entire thg re-do. Good luck for those manufacturers who are still planning on doing sthg big with H-FCV. W/o gov't support, the success of this vehicle is HIGHLY unlikely.

Take a good look at NGC or CNG (Natural Gas) vehicles. Green (compared to gas vehicles), available for over 2 decades already, and still, extremely weak infrastructure (and thus sales).

Zack

Hydrogen is the long-term solution to kicking the oil habit. GM and Toyota are leaders in fuel cell vehicles and if they can get the prices down, we'll see the move to hydrogen fuel in a relatively short time. Battery Electric cars will be confined to city use at that point, unless some of these wonder batteries we keep hearing about actually do deliver a 300 mile range with a five minute recharge.

tmc

The goals need to start small.. having at least ONE fueling station in every state, then every county, then every Zip code, etc.. baby steps..
No doubt, they can get the price down lower than $50k as well, plus have some tax incentives too. This and rising and uncertain gasoline prices (seasonal price gouging) will alter the US mind-set about big oil and their agenda. If Toyota has any success in 2015, you can be sure Honda will join the party within 2 model years.

M

What about the BMW Hydrogen 7? You never hear about that one. Is BMW and Toyota teaming up?

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