Detroit Auto Show 2014: Would You Drive This Toyota Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle? [PHOTOS]

 @angeloyoung_a.young@ibtimes.com
on January 13 2014 1:16 PM
  • Toyota HFC Concept 001
    The latest draft of the Toyota HFC (Hydrogen Fuel Cell) Concept car that Toyota plans to introduce into the marketplace next year. Unlike the hydrogen fuel cell concept that showed up at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show (dubbed the HFC-R) last year, the glass is tinted out indicating the interior details aren't quite ready for prime time. Last year the HFC-R's interior was on display, suggesting Toyota is overhauling what it displayed last year. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 002
    The Toyota HFC Concept is a more-developed version of the HFC-R concept Toytoa was showing off last year. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 003
    The Toyota HFC hydrogen fuel port. It's unclear what we're seeing here and how it opens. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 004
    Toyota is making a bold design stance. It's difficult to believe this wouldn't be toned down in the vehicle the company finally introduced, though a Toyota representative told IBTimes recently that much of what we see here will be in the final draft vehicle. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 005
    The rear profile of the Toyota HFC Concept. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 006
    The Toyota HFC Concept eschew side mirrors and embraces side cameras. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 007
    Toyota has revealed significantly more this year than last about the underpinnings. Last year we only saw a fuel cell battery; this year we get a glimpse of how the whole system is connected. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 008
    The Toyota HFC Concept's battery pack. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 009
    The Toyota HFC Concept hydrogen fuel tank, which appears to be situated like a gas tank in below the second row of seats. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 010
    The Toyota HFC Concept's fuel cell pack, where the reaction between hydrogen and oxygen takes place. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 012
    The fuel cell's boost converter, situated toward the front of the vehicle near the engine. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 013
    Toyota HFC Concept's engine is situated in front of the boost converter, hydrogen tank, fuel cell and battery. IBTimes / Angelo Young
  • Toyota HFC Concept 014
    The Toyota HFC Concept front cooling configuration. IBTimes / Angelo Young
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Toyota Motor Corp. (TYO:7203) arrived at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show with a more-completed version of its FCV Concept, the latest draft of the company’s hydrogen fuel cell vehicle it plans to sell next year.

toyota-fcv-r-hydrogen-fuel-cell-car This is what was displayed in Detroit last year, dubbed the HFC-R.  IBTimes / Angelo Young

It's hard to imagine that Toyota would release a car with such, shall we say, bold design elements, but a company representative told International Business Times last week that what you see is pretty close to what will come out in 2015. Toyota will focus on the California market where most public hydrogen refueling stations have been established or are being built. Perhaps the California market that Toyota will focus on is a little more amicable to a car that looks like something from a theme park.

Toyota has been test driving a masked-up version of the vehicle while at the same time displaying this vehicle publicly. Does this mean Toyota has a more developed (and less ... weird) HFC vechile under wraps?

002-fcv Is this a less ostentatious version of the HFC Concept that's on display in Detroit?  Toyota Motor Corp.

But whatever. What's important here is what this blue thing is built on. This year Toyota has revealed a more-complete configuration of what will power the release versions of the HFC. We see the key components here: the fuel cell, hydrogen tank, battery, booster motor and air intake. Whether hydrogen fuel cell technology is the future of motorized transport has yet to be seen, but clearly automakers are investing in the potential. Toyota, which took the lead in rolling out hybrids into the marketplace with the Prius, is probably hoping to do the same with hydrogen.

 

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