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Toyota: Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Cars Coming In ‘15

CES 2014 Las Vegas – Toyota will begin selling a “reasonably priced” hydrogen fuel-cell electric car in 2015 in California, the automaker announced at International CES.

Toyota said it will announce more details about the car in the coming weeks and months, including U.S. sales targets, the vehicle’s name, and comprehensive specifications and performance data.

 An engineering prototype used for extensive on-road testing in North America for more than a year has consistently delivered a driving range of about 300 miles, the company said. The prototype also delivers zero-to-60 mph acceleration of about 10 seconds with no emissions other than water vapor. Hydrogen-tank refueling takes three to five minutes.

 California has approved more than $200 million to build about 20 new hydrogen-refueling stations by 2015, a total of 40 by 2016, and as many as 100 by 2024, the company said.

 “Fuel-cell electric vehicles will be in our future sooner than many people believe, and in much greater numbers than anyone expected,” said Bob Carter, SVP of automotive operations for Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. “Hydrogen works beautifully with oxygen to create water and electricity and nothing more,” he noted.

 During a press conference here, the company showed the engineering prototype and a blue four-door mid-size sedan concept car.

Toyota has been testing a series of prototypes in North America for 11 years and “dramatically reduced the cost of building a fuel-cell powertrain,” the company said. Toyota estimates it will deliver a 95-percent cost reduction in the powertrain and fuel tanks of the vehicle it will launch in 2015 compared to the cost of the original prototype in 2002.