A Toyota Mirai hydrogen powered electric car, run by private hire firm Green Tomato in London, has clocked up 50,000 working miles in two years.
All the talk about the future of cars revolves around a shift to battery electric vehicles (BEVs) as more advanced solid state batteries look to be on the horizon.
That will address the range anxiety and the time to refuel obstacles which put drivers off opting for an EV, but Toyota still believe there is a viable alternative – cars powered by hydrogen fuel cells.
It’s two years since the first Toyota Mirai hydrogen fuel cell cars were handed to their new UK owners, one of which was Green Tomato Private Hire in London, and they’ve been using it ever since to ferry fares in and around London.
Clocking up 50,000 miles in the last two years, and ferrying around 5,000 clients around town in the process, it’s been a proper real-world challenge to demonstrate that hydrogen fuel cell cars from Toyota are every bit as reliable as their ICE cars.
The Mirai has sailed through its real-world challenge and shown itself to be reliable and fuss-free, needing only a service to keep it in top nick – and earning its keep.
Not only that, but refuelling of the Mirai has only meant around 14 hours spent at the fuel pump in the two years, whereas re-charging a BEV on a 7kW charger would have meant 50 days of downtime – and a chunk of lost revenue.
Hydrogen fuel cell cars may be too expensive at the moment to be properly commercially viable, but with Toyota reckoning they’ll cost the same as a hybrid car in a few years time, they are once again looking like they could be the real future of motoring.