Gadkari rolls out Toyota’s green hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle

Underlining that the government’s aim is to make India a green hydrogen exporter in the future, Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday launched the hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle green (FCEV) Toyota Mirai.

Toyota Mirae was one of the first hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, launched in 2014. The company has now launched the second generation of the vehicle, with a 30% increase in range. A fuel cell uses the chemical energy of hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity without harmful emissions. The vehicle claims a range of 650 km.

According to the Ministry of Transport, Toyota Kirloskar Motor Pvt Ltd and the International Center for Automotive Technology (ICAT) are conducting a pilot project to study and evaluate the world’s most advanced Toyota Mirai FCEV on Indian roads and weather conditions. This is a first of its kind project in India which aims to create a green hydrogen based ecosystem in the country by raising awareness of the unique utility of green hydrogen and FCEV technology.

During the launch of the vehicle, Gadkari said: “Hydrogen made from petroleum is called brown hydrogen, while that from gasoline is black hydrogen. But our current environmental needs require us to use green hydrogen.”

“This is just the beginning. Once this car is rolled out, green hydrogen stations are to be opened in cities. It is an indigenous fuel – our imports are currently Rs 8 trillion , if things go like this, they will go to 25. So we need a cost-effective native solution,” Gadkari said.

“Green hydrogen costs $6-7 per kilo, and this car travels 153 kilometers. We are working to reduce the cost to $1. Even if it is slightly higher than that, it will be more profitable than any other fuel, added Gadkari.

“The fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV), powered by hydrogen, is one of the best zero-emission solutions. It is completely environmentally friendly, with no tailpipe emissions other than water,” said a Department of Transportation statement later said.