Like the very slow drip of water coming from the tailpipe of a hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicle, information about the first production fuel-cell model from Toyota – slated for 2015 – is coming rather deliberately. The latest is that Toyota might use the Prius badge for the fuel-cell sedan, Auto Guide says, citing comments made by Bill Fay, Toyota's US group vice president and general manager, at the Los Angeles Auto Show earlier this month.
Fay confirmed that Toyota executives are discussing the idea of badging the hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle with the Prius name because of the model's dominant position in the hybrid world and the positive association among green-minded drivers. He declined to indicate whether the badge-naming was a done deal.
Earlier this month, Toyota unveiled its FCV hydrogen fuel-cell concept vehicle at the Tokyo Motor Show. The sedan's fuel cell stack will use two 70-MPa high-pressure hydrogen tanks that deliver more than twice the power of the company's previous stack. Not many further details have emerged, though word has leaked that the car will be able to go about 300 miles on a full tank of hydrogen and could cost somewhere between $50,000 and $100,000. Toyota is among a group of automakers that includes General Motors and Hyundai that have announced plans to have a fuel-cell vehicle ready for the public in the next few years.
Do you think Toyota would be wise to badge its upcoming fuel cell model as a Prius? Vote in our poll below, then have your say in Comments.
|Yes, absolutely||2890 (47.0%)|
|No, absolutely not||2439 (39.7%)|
|I'm not sure||819 (13.3%)|