While this week’s LA Auto Show may be making headlines with its sheer number of showcased models, that does not mean other innovations are not happening in other parts of the world. In fact, on the other side of the pond, Toyota’s hydrogen powered FCHV-adv (Fuel Cell Hybrid Vehicle-advanced) has been undergoing trials at the RAC Brighton to London Future Car Challenge in order to show how the company’s hybrids can perform in the real world.
Hydrogen-powered hybrids have not had the traction the industry it has hoped for in recent years, particularly due to the engineering challenges related to cost effectiveness. However, the benefits are still considerable, especially with the sole by-products of hydrogen power being only water and heat.
In a bid to showcase its potential, Toyota has installed an on-board hydrogen storage system that isn’t affected by temperature fluctuations. The company’s FCHV-adv was also given the goal of decreasing the cost of the system’s components while still achieving a viable driving range of more than 500 miles on a full tank.
While Toyota has been road testing FCHV-advs since 2002, it is hoped that this advanced model will be the model that brings the vehicle to sale in 2015. Until then, the company will test the model in places such as California, New York, and this week, London.
At the RAC’s eco-rally, the FCHV-adv joined other ‘future cars’ including Toyota’s Prius, Auris Hybrid and Prius PHV. The cars were tasked with using the least energy as possible to get from Brighton to London. And although Volkswagen won the challenge, the Guardian’s Bibi van der Zee got to ride in the FCHV-adv and reported that the vehicle wasn’t “allowed to properly compete, because the laboratory won’t release the technical data just yet.”
via The Guardian