Toyota's 2015 Fuel Cell Car Aims For 300-Mile Range


300-milesThe Toyota 2015 FCV-R should achieve a range of 300 miles per charge, making it the longest-range electric vehicle on the market, beating even the Tesla Model S. But with the Toyotal not due out for a few more years, electric vehicles still have plenty of time to catch up.

Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles still have the major advantage of quick refueling, while electric cars can finally be charged in less than an hour. However, without much of a hydrogen fueling infrastructure, these hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles are limited to a very small area of the U.S. where filling stations are, negating their long-range advantage.

Even with a 300-mile range, the Tesla Model S with the 85 kWh battery pack isn’t very far behind, with an EPA rating of 265 miles per charge. And with its new battery-swapping stations, the Tesla Model S can be “refilled” in the same time it takes to fill a tank of gas. By 2015, any advantage hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles may have could completely disappear.

Even so, automakers like Toyota seem wedded to the technology. At the Aspen Ideas Festival, the FCV-R will be on display, along with the FCHV-adv, RAV4 EV, and Lexus LS to “showcase advanced technology vehicles that are on the road today.” Toyota has pledged to begin selling a hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle by 2015, and has said it will sell for between $50,000 and $100,000.

Hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles finally seem like a possibility in the 21st century, but by the time they hit the market, will electric vehicles have already surpassed them in range and convenience? 

Source: Toyota

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loves attending and writing about/photographing events, and he writes on CleanTechnica, Gas2, Kleef&Co, and Green Building Elements. He has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, automobiles, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, and geography.
  • Wallace

    Comparing the range on a fuel cell to an electric car is similar to comparing the range of a gas car to an electric car. You still have to stop and pay for hydrogen. With an electric car you just plug in at home for penny’s and you can even install solar panels on your home to cover all of your driving.

    • Mike Anders

      OVERALL e-cars are much more polluting that fuel cell vehicles.

      • Bob_Wallace

        How does that math work, Mike?

        Where do you get hydrogen that is cleaner than electricity?

  • UncleB

    I see Nuclear electric sources, thorium sources on the horizons. I see electric bullet trains, mag-lev trains on the horizons. I see the end of jet fuel intensive travel coming in a decade. I see 300 mile range as adequate for any car in that age. I see these with ease since the all, already exist in Asia! America is so very backwards now!

    • JimBouton

      You had me, right up to “nuclear electric sources.”

      • UncleB

        ‎Kun Chen from Chinese Academy of Sciences on China Thorium
        Thorium LFTR styled reactors may prevail – 99% efficient and waste is safe after 300 years – lofty goal but to debut 2017 in China. America already did this in the 60’s and have the proven technology.

        • Bob_Wallace

          The US did build one. It wasn’t financially viable.

          Since the demonstration that they could be made no company has decided that they were worth investing their money.

          Nuclear is simply too expensive to consider. It’s only being built with massive amounts of money supplied by governments. It simply can’t compete in a free market.

          We’ve got cheaper and safer ways to make all the electricity we want. We can bring that generation on line quicker and leave no problems for those who follow us.

          • electric source

            The reason thorium research stopped in the US, is Nixon fired the head of the program and poured money into uranium light water reactors. Nuclear only gets launched with government money. Now the Chinese and others are willing to put up the money as they want the power, thorium has a great chance to be commercialized. In the US we have lots of natural gas which is cheaper than nuclear. The chinese, Japanese, French don’t have the same options, and thorium will come. It just will take over a decade.

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