Toyota Hilux FCEV enters testing and demonstration phase


The Toyota Hilux hydrogen fuel cell (FCEV) development project, which was first announced in December 2022, has now entered its final phase.

According to Toyota, 10 Hilux FCEV prototypes have been built at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK (TMUK) plant in Derby, England.

Five vehicles are undergoing rigorous field testing to assess safety, performance, functionality, and durability, generating test drive data in real-world situations, while the other five are engaged in customer and media demonstrations, including at the forthcoming Olympic and Paralympic Games Paris 2024.

Externally, the fuel cell model has the same dimensions and rugged appearance as the latest Hilux generation but beneath the surface, there’s a ‘heart’ derived from the Mirai that offers a range of up to 600 km – further than might be achieved using a battery electric system.

And thanks to hydrogen’s light weight, the Hilux FCEV is said to have higher payload capacity and towing capability compared to other zero-emission alternatives

Hydrogen is stored in three high-pressure fuel tanks, each containing 2.6kg to give a total capacity of 7.8kg. The tanks are mounted within the vehicle’s ladder frame chassis.

At the front axle, there is polymer electrolyte fuel cell stack comprising 330 cells producing 174 PS, while mounted on the rear axle an electric motor generating 182 PS and 300 Nm of torque.

Meanwhile, the lithium-ion battery, which stores the electricity generated by the fuel cells, is located in the rear load deck, above the hydrogen tanks. This avoids any loss of cabin space.

Hydrogen fuel cell is one of the powertrains developed by Toyota as part of its previously announced multi-pathway strategy.

The company expects Europe to be one of the world’s largest hydrogen fuel markets by 2030. As a result, in December 2023, Toyota Motor Europe (TME) announced the Hydrogen Factory Europe to help accelerate the commercialization of the technology.

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