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HomeBlogToyota's Upcoming Hydrogen-Powered 5.0 V-8 Engine Has The Potential To Bury EVs

Toyota’s Upcoming Hydrogen-Powered 5.0 V-8 Engine Has The Potential To Bury EVs


Because it launched the revolutionary Prius in 1997, Toyota has been a pacesetter in hybrid and plug-in hybrid automobiles, which paved the way in which for the present electrical car craze. Nonetheless, despite its roots, the Japanese model has been hesitant to leap headfirst into the all-electric development. Toyota’s first 100-percent EV, the awkwardly named BZ4X, has bought solely a few hundred items as of mid-October, and the Japanese carmaker does not plan to ramp up manufacturing till 2025. Toyota’s slowness in adopting all-electric automobiles was bolstered by the corporate’s president, Akio Toyoda.


Because the Wall Road Journal studies, “Individuals concerned within the auto business are largely a silent majority,” Toyoda mentioned. “That silent majority is questioning whether or not EVs are actually OK to have as a single possibility. However they assume it is the development, to allow them to’t communicate out loudly. As a result of the precise reply continues to be unclear, we should not restrict ourselves to only one possibility.”

Though that sentiment is controversial, it deserves consideration. All-electrics quantity to solely a fraction of the full new automotive market, which leaves the market open for one more sort of car, which is the path Toyota has chosen. Let’s take a better take a look at one of these engine, the hydrogen combustion engine, and see why Toyota executives assume it could actually doubtlessly make EVs out of date.

Up to date October 19, 2023: With Toyota rapidly creating hydrogen automobiles throughout its international manufacturing line, there are professionals and cons to the expertise. This put up has been expanded to mirror that, in addition to perception into what the longer term may very well be for hydrogen/fuel-cell manufacturing. Toyota may very well be onto one thing very large.

Data for this text has been sourced Toyota primarily and from credible publications like Kelley Blue E-book.

Associated: Automakers Deeply Invested In Hydrogen-powered Automobiles

1 Introducing The Corolla Cross H2 Idea

  • The Corolla Cross H2 Idea has been launched, more likely to come to market within the subsequent few years.

The Toyota Corolla Cross H2 Idea makes use of a brand new prototype hydrogen Inside Combustion Engine (abbreviated “ICE”) automotive known as the Corolla Cross H2 Idea. Energy comes from the recent 1.6-liter turbocharged three-cylinder used within the GR Corolla and GR Yaris, transformed to utilizing Hydrogen as a gasoline. To start with, thick, armored gasoline tank(s) are required for holding the extremely flammable hydrogen expertise that Toyota gleaned from its FCEV (Gas Cell Electrical Car), the Mirai. The engine will get hardened valves and valve seats, stronger connecting rods, and gasoline injectors designed for gasoline, not liquid. Like an ordinary Corolla, the Cross H2 Idea has room for 5 passengers and their baggage.

2 A Giant Hydrogen Powered V-8 Is In The Works

A prototype Toyota/Yamaha Hydrogen V8 Engine sits on an engine stand.
Yamaha

  • Toyota has partnered with Yamaha Motor to develop a hydrogen-powered V-8 engine.

In thrilling information to gearheads in all places, Toyota has partnered with Yamaha Motor to develop a hydrogen-fueled V-8 engine. In an announcement earlier this yr, Yamaha mentioned the 5.0-liter V-8 can be based mostly on the one utilized by the Lexus RC Coupe, with modifications to its cylinder heads and gasoline injectors, amongst different issues. Yamaha claims it’s going to produce 455 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 398 pound-feet of torque at 3,600 rpm. That is a bit much less energy than the unique gasoline V-8 that it is based mostly on, however nonetheless fairly respectable. However essentially the most gorgeous characteristic of the hydrogen V-8 must be the eight-into-one top-mounted exhaust manifold, which Yamaha claims creates a definite high-frequency sound.

3 Hydrogen Powered Automobiles Are Rapidly And Simply Refueled

Shell Hydrogen Station
Rob Crandall / Shutterstock

  • Refueling a hydrogen car is way quicker than charging an EV.

You must admit that despite the fact that filling up your gas-powered ICE car is probably not the spotlight of your day, it’s not rocket science. Filling up a hydrogen-powered automotive is simply as straightforward however doesn’t take practically as lengthy to perform as a result of it’s a gasoline somewhat than a liquid. When you have ever had a propane tank crammed (not traded out for a brand new one), you perceive how briskly the method can be. Actually, the brand new Toyota Yaris GRH2 solely takes a minute and a half to fill fully stuffed with Hydrogen, which is way quicker than it will take to fill the tank on a Toyota Camry with unleaded.

Associated: Are Hydrogen Automobiles The Want Of The Hour?

4 Hydrogen Has A Broad Local weather Adaptability

Hydrogen Storage Tanks In Frigid Temperatures
DLR German Aerospace Heart through Wikimedia Commons

  • Hydrogen can stand up to right down to -435 levels, making it one of many extra climate-adaptable.

Diesel gasoline has lengthy been utilized in automobiles that should be used for hauling and towing extreme hundreds, however they’ll freeze in areas the place the temperatures drop down into the adverse double digits. Fortunately, unleaded gasoline can stand up to temperatures of as much as -100 levels Fahrenheit which might occur with some chilly windchill elements. Lithium batteries can stand up to as much as -140 levels Fahrenheit earlier than they begin to freeze up, which might nonetheless happen sometimes. Hydrogen can stand up to -435 levels Fahrenheit, which exhibits it’s the only option in chilly temperatures worldwide. The identical holds true when evaluating the recent finish of the spectrum: Hydrogen has a wider local weather adaptability than the opposite two choices at the moment obtainable.

5 Hydrogen Gas Methods Keep away from Materials Shortage Issues

Akio Toyoda at the Thailand 60th anniversary
Toyota

  • As a result of lithium batteries might be difficult to provide, hydrogen might make for the proper various.

Lithium batteries are usually not made out of supplies that may simply be produced. Actually, many individuals, such because the CEO of Toyota (former CEO Akio Toyoda), see a scarcity of lithium and battery-grade nickel, which signifies that there can be a scarcity of supplies wanted to provide the lithium batteries utilized in EVs. That might create a significant setback within the transfer in direction of electrical automobiles, which may very well be prevented by utilizing hydrogen-powered engines if they’re engineered to maximise their full potential.

6 Hydrogen Pushed Engines Sound And Reply Like Gas Pushed Engines

  • Hydrogen automobiles may give the identical rumble as gas-powered automobiles.

Sound is likely one of the largest complaints you will have with EV automobiles and vans. When you have ever pushed an previous traditional muscle automotive, reminiscent of a 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS with a giant block 454 or a 1969 Ford Mustang with a 428 Cobra Jet, nothing can examine with the thrill as you press the accelerator to the ground. The sound because the carbs open up and the gasoline rushes into the chambers, energy rushes by means of your chest as quickly because the horsepower hits the drivetrain, and adrenaline hits in full because the automotive launches. EVs can not give that to you, however a hydrogen-powered automotive can as a result of it really works in the identical common method.

Associated: 10 Hydrogen Automobiles To Look Out For

7 Hydrogen Engines Are Utterly Mechanical

  • Hydrogen-powered automobiles nonetheless closely depend on mechanics: they’re higher for that business’s well being long run.

Small native mechanic outlets might be discovered on virtually each nook throughout the nation, however as EVs develop into extra widespread with shoppers, these small garages will not be an possibility for you. They are able to go surfing, watch just a few YouTube movies, and determine easy methods to restore your electrical engine. Nonetheless, it’s extremely steered that you simply take it to a registered mechanic aware of the brand new expertise. The beauty of hydrogen-powered engines is that since they’re so much like fuel-powered engines, they’re fully mechanical. That signifies that these small nook outlets that you’re comfy taking your automobiles to will have the ability to work on them.

8 This Know-how Has A Checkered Previous

Hyundai Nexo Hydrogen Tank Safety illustration
Hyundai

  • The idea of hydrogen-powered automobiles has been round for many years, with BMW being one of many first main automakers to attempt making a mannequin utilizing this construct.

The idea of powering an inner combustion engine with Hydrogen isn’t new. Most notably, German automaker BMW produced the 750HL in 2002, adopted by the Hydrogen 7 in 2005. The Hydrogen 7 was based mostly on BMW’s conventional gasoline-powered 6.0-liter V-12 however with modifications to burn Hydrogen and gasoline. That technically made it a dual-fuel engine and solely 100 complete had been produced. Some downsides to Hydrogen are that it is extremely flammable, troublesome to course of and retailer, and the combustion course of emits nitrous oxide.

9 EVs Are Not With out Fault Both

Gray 2023 Toyota Prius Prime
Toyota

  • Electrical automobiles nonetheless use vitality to cost, with some international locations regulating them extra severely.

Versus virtually all the opposite automakers who’re betting every little thing on electrical automobiles, Toyota’s strategy to carbon neutrality is extra diversified, evaluating a number of applied sciences to attain the objective of zero emissions. This ethos appears more and more prescient when contemplating that with the warfare in Ukraine and its impression on vitality provides, European international locations are searching for methods to chop vitality use. Actually, Switzerland has gone as far as to encourage EV drivers to solely use their automobiles for pressing wants like going to work or the grocery retailer – and it may very well be codified into regulation.

Associated: Why Hydrogen Automobiles Will By no means Be Profitable

10 The 2023 Mirai Is Making Headlines

An action shot of the 2023 Toyota Mirai
Toyota

  • Toyota has launched its hydrogen-powered car: Mirai.

With Toyota investing closely in hydrogen energy, we’re seeing extra fashions come to market utilizing it as an influence supply. For instance, the 2023 Mirai is hydrogen-powered and has already began rolling off manufacturing, hitting dealerships, and being pushed by folks all through California and has been bought in Europe. Hydrogen-powered automobiles are nonetheless very new to the scene, however demand continues to develop for them. That mentioned, worldwide, Toyota bought 1,674 Mirai automobiles within the first 5 months of this yr — a 13.3 % fall on the identical interval in 2022. Extra folks really feel protected in an EV (for now), so this may require re-education of markets the place hydrogen is bought.

Many imagine your subsequent car must be hydrogen-powered, nevertheless it’s not sufficient.

11 Toyota Is Putting Enormous Bets On Hydrogen At Its U.S. Vegetation

Toyota Battery Manufacturing Plant in North Carolina
Toyota Pressroom

  • Toyota has devoted numerous US services to testing and perfecting hydrogen-powered automobiles.

With Toyota quickly transferring within the EV, PHEV, and hydrogen path, it is price noting that a few of its U.S. factories will see gasoline cell batteries manufactured within them. In accordance with a press launch from Toyota, a devoted line at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky (TMMK) will start assembling built-in twin gasoline cell (FC) modules destined to be used in hydrogen-powered, heavy-duty industrial vans. That is more likely to unfold to different US and international services as Toyota ramps up hydrogen manufacturing.

12 Hydrogen Automobiles Will not Explode Or Catch Fireplace As Simply As Lithium-Ion Batteries

Toyota's Current Lithium-Ion Battery in a factory.
Toyota

  • Hydrogen has been deemed protected for automotive manufacturing by Toyota, in addition to many unbiased research.

One of many prime security considerations with hydrogen vitality getting used on the industrial stage has been the chance of explosion. Some specialists declare a hydrogen explosion resembles extra of a bomb than a typical spark and fireplace, which has prompted folks to be cautious. Nonetheless, in comparison with the frequency of lithium-ion overheating or reacting poorly to environmental situations, hydrogen (when dealt with accurately) hydrogen is usually a safer, much less reactive vitality supply. It is also price noting that Hydrogen gasoline itself is 200 occasions lighter for a similar quantity of vitality as lithium batteries. Hydrogen shops much more vitality than gasoline, so it may be a significant supply of vitality for even large-scale consumption.

Associated: This is What Makes The Toyota Mirai A Distinctive Automobile

13 Hydrogen Means Your Automobile Will Final Longer

2023 Toyota Hilux Hydrogen prototype, profile view
Toyota

  • Hydrogen automobiles have a tendency to interrupt down lower than gasoline or electrical automobiles.

Combined with Toyota’s engineering and skill to provide gasoline cell expertise at a mass scale, we might simply see hydrogen automobiles breaking down much less and requiring fewer journeys for upkeep. Though hydrogen automobiles are powered by electrical motors, they will not be solely specializing in charging, battery well being, and eventual degradation. The identical comparability might be made to ICE, with common engines ultimately breaking down and failing. Hydrogen, though at the moment troublesome to work with, can develop into simplified with sufficient testing and funding from manufacturers like Toyota.

The gasoline cell stacks are designed to final the lifetime of the car, about 150,000–200,000 miles. As soon as your hydrogen automotive dies otherwise you’re executed with it, the gasoline cell can be disassembled and the supplies recycled, much like what occurs with car parts immediately.

There are at the moment 10+ hydrogen automobiles within the works, so it seems to be a race to the end line for auto producers.

14 Toyota Has Joined Forces With Different Traders In Its Race To Excellent Hydrogen Combustion Engines

Toyota hydrogen fuel cell powertrain
Toyota

  • Toyota has joined the Hydrogen Council, investing cash right into a $5 billion greenback initiative to carry this vitality to the plenty by the following decade.

As a part of creating and perfecting hydrogen combustion engines, Toyota has seen traders within the idea. The emergence of the Hydrogen Council, a world consortium comprised of prime executives from distinguished firms within the gasoline, vitality, manufacturing, and mining sectors, underscores the rising significance of hydrogen. Members of the council, reminiscent of Air Liquide, Alstom, BMW, Daimler, Shell, and Toyota, have collectively dedicated $5 billion for hydrogen-related investments over the following 5 years. Their goal is to streamline and speed up hydrogen investments throughout numerous industries into the following decade. Toyota has the time, cash, and energy to do that.

15 For Now, Hydrogen Toyota’s Will Primarily Be Produced For Chinese language And European Markets

2023 Toyota Hilux Hydrogen prototype, under-hood view
Toyota

  • Toyota hopes to promote 200,000 hydrogen automobiles in Europe and China by 2030.

Though we’ve seen the Mirai pop up in California within the US, Toyota’s predominant focus for hydrogen automobiles stays in China and Europe. Per the corporate, it should give attention to rolling out hydrogen-powered automobiles in Europe and China with the intention of promoting 200,000 items by 2030. It is a huge objective to set for such a brand new expertise for the Japanese model, however they’re recognized to push the bounds. Hydrogen-powered automobiles have executed higher in European and Chinese language markets, and they’re quickly to develop into broadly obtainable to shoppers. The USA will not see many for just a few years if present projections maintain true.



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