Hydrogen Cars May Soon Be As Affordable As Hybrid Cars

Industry News / 4 Comments

Hopefully there will be enough hydrogen infrastructure by then.

Toyota has made huge bets that the future of transportation will involve hydrogen power. The company just revealed its Fine-Ride Concept to show off what could be done with hydrogen in the future. So far, only a few hydrogen cars have actually reached the market including the Toyota Mirai, and its main rival, the Honda Clarity. The two biggest problems with hydrogen cars today are their price tag and the lack of infrastructure to support them. Speaking to Autocar, Toyota predicted that the first issue of cost should be solved by 2025.

Today in 2017, a brand-new Prius costs a little over $23,000. The hydrogen-powered Mirai is much more expensive at over $57,000 and still loses money for Toyota. At the Tokyo Motor Show, Toyota executives predicted that the next generation of hydrogen technology will be much cheaper to produce and will be more efficient. As the production of hydrogen cars increases, the costs will go down even further with economies of scale. "In the early 2020s we will launch the next generation hydrogen fuel stack technology, and that will provide a substantial move forward," said Naomichi Hata, general manager of new business planning for Toyota.

Toyota only produces around 3,000 units per year of the Mirai, but that figure is expected to be ten times higher by 2025. "As a result of these gains we expect (in Japan at least) the same car type to cost the same price whether it is a hybrid or powered by hydrogen." If Toyota's predictions are correct, a hydrogen-powered car should be available in the low $20,000 range by 2025. This should significantly increase their attractiveness, but only if there is a correlating growth in hydrogen filling stations that makes owning one of these cars easier.


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