The world’s largest automaker has decided to place all of its green credentials in one upcoming technology – fuel cell cars.
Japan’s Toyota has decided that the future of electrification has to do with hydrogen, instead of the more traditional approach of designing vehicles that use battery-power to provide the necessary electricity. So, the Mirai model is their approach, withe the automaker ready to invest in its future and see if the hydrogen powered car will have the same success as its Prius hybrid had back in the 2000s. But there’s a catch – even if the model is series produced – some customers at hom ein Japan will ahve to wait as much as three years for the Mirai hydrogen fuel cell car because the automaker has capped the build process. According to Toyota itself, the output value of 3,000 units per year is not a desire, but a necessity.
Although the automaker is currently introducing its completely new production system, the necessary manufacturing prowess and secure quality control needed to deliver more fuel cell cars and at a faster rate is not available.”Both in terms of design and manufacturing technology, we need to improve,” comments Mirai Chief Engineer Yoshikazu Tanaka. “We need to achieve a drastic technological evolution.” The carmaker is already trying to increase its production cadence, as customers ordering the 2015 model year Mirai might actually take delivery only in 2018. It will have an output of 700 units in 2015 for Japan, Europe and the US, followed by a bump to 2,000 autos next year and the 3,000 limit the next.