According to Consumer Reports, the Toyota FCHV will begin consumer testing soon. General Motors, Honda and BMW have already put public drivers behind the wheels of their hydrogen vehicles.
Not to be outdone, Toyota will also be putting the public behind of the wheel of its fuel cell version of the Toyota Highlander. This past June I had talked about how the Toyota FCHV with its 10,000 psi tanks was able to achieve a range of 516 miles.
Toyota announced last month that the Highlander FCHV will be leasing to the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport for road tests. The Toyota FCHV is also a hybrid vehicle partially powered by nickel-metal hydride batteries.
I’ve had the personal pleasure of taking the Toyota FCHV for a test drive in Southern California. It’s very quiet, handles well and has decent acceleration. Toyota has a bit of catching up to do with BMW, GM and Honda in regards to the consumer testing of their fuel cell vehicle.
But, seeing that these three other automakers have been very quiet recently in regard to making news and Toyota’s reputation for thoughtful strategic planning, one can expect the number one Japanese automaker to make a splash when it does decide to go gung ho with its public testing program.