Toyota Wants to Make the Mirai Less Expensive
Ever since Toyota revealed the production version of its Mirai fuel-cell vehicle, we’ve been excited for its impending US release, scheduled for sometime later this year. While the Mirai will only be available in certain Californian and North Eastern markets at first, it has the potential to become a huge hit nationwide if and when America’s hydrogen refueling network is expanded.
But one disappointing thing about the Mirai is its price tag, which will be $57,500 here in the US. Granted, this technology is new, and the Mirai is built by hand, but paying almost 60 grand for a sedan seems a bit steep. But don’t worry; Toyota has plans to drop the price of the Mirai in the coming years until it’s comparable to a diesel sedan of the same size.
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While it’s not clear just how long it will take to bring the Mirai down to a more affordable starting price, Katsuhiko Hirose, project general manager for Toyota’s fuel cell development division, explained to Automotive News that the higher-ups at Toyota know they need to find ways to cut costs on Mirai production to make it more affordable to the general population, and they are working together to find those ways. “We say, ‘It may take 15 years.’ Their order is: ‘You do it in half.’ That is normal communication, then we try to extend it, and they try to shorten the target time,” explained Hirose.
Only time will tell as to whether or not hydrogen-powered cars will take off in the same way that hybrid cars have, but Toyota’s attitude about producing more affordable vehicles will certainly help the cause.
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News Source: Automotive News (subscription required)
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