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Toyota Mirai production starts for Japanese market

Posted by: on December 15th, 2014 No Comments

 

This week, the Motomachi-plant in Toyota City starts mass production of the Toyota Mirai fuel cell car. A historic moment for Toyota, which also underlines the expertise and the know-how off the work-force at this Toyota City based plant.

Toyota Mirai

The Motomachi factory is one of the oldest in the Toyota group. Located nearby the group headquarters in Toyota City, it started operations in 1959 with the production of the legendary Toyopet Crown.

Today, the plant employs approximately 7000 workers, most of them

Toyota Crown

 

 

 

 

involved in the production of models for the Japanese market, such as the Crown and the Mark X.

 

But since 2008, a small unit of highly skilled employees is assigned tospecial projects that require a lot of care, acting as pioneers within Toyota’s production workforce. This is the team that built the limited-run Lexus LFA supercar, and now, they have turned their attention to the Toyota Mirai.

They have a dual role: supplying the first mass-produced fuel cell car and gathering experience for future generations of the Toyota hydrogen-powered models.

The first months of Mirai production are destined for the Japanese market, but as from summer 2015, Motomachi will also start churning out cars for Europe and the US.

 

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All you need to know about the new Mirai hydrogen car

Posted by: on November 18th, 2014 Comments Off

 

The Mirai signals the start of a new age of vehicles. Using hydrogen – an important future energy source – to generate electricity, the Mirai achieves superior environmental performance with the convenience and driving pleasure expected of any car.

The Mirai uses the Toyota Fuel Cell System (TFCS), which features both fuel cell technology and hybrid technology, and includes Toyota’s new proprietary FC Stack and high-pressure hydrogen tanks. The TFCS is more energy efficient than internal combustion engines and emits no CO2 or pollutants when driven. Drivers can also expect the same level of convenience as offered by gasoline engine vehicles, with a generous cruising range and a hydrogen refuelling time of about three minutes.

 

Hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicle: Toyota Mirai

 

The Mirai delivers everything expected from a next-generation car: an immediately recognizable design; driving exhilaration stemming from superior handling stability achieved by a low center of gravity; and quiet but powerful acceleration provided by the electric motor.

 

TFCS provides superior environmental performance and convenience

The Mirai features the TFCS, a fusion of fuel cell technology with hybrid technology.

The system uses Toyota-developed components including the Toyota FC Stack, FC boost converter, and high-pressure hydrogen tanks.

Toyota FC Stack

The new Toyota FC Stack achieves a maximum output of 114 kW (155 DIN hp) and a world-leading power output density of 3.1 kW/L (2.2 times higher than that of the previous Toyota FCHV-adv limited-lease model).

FC Boost Converter

A new compact, high-efficiency, high-capacity converter has been developed to boost power generated in the Toyota FC Stack to 650 volts. Increasing the voltage has made it possible to reduce the size of the electric motor and the number of Toyota FC Stack fuel cells, leading to a smaller, higher-performance Toyota Fuel Cell System, thereby reducing system costs.

High-pressure Hydrogen Tanks

Tanks with a three-layer structure made of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic and other materials are used to store hydrogen at a very high pressure of 70 MPa (70 megapascals, or approximately 700 bar). Compared to the high pressure hydrogen tanks used in the Toyota FCHV-adv model, tank storage has been increased by approximately 20 percent.

 

Superior handling stability and outstanding quietness enhances driving pleasure

The high output Toyota FC Stack and optimal battery power control drive the electric motor and ensure powerful responsiveness at all vehicle speeds. This provides an immediate increase in torque at the first press of the accelerator, and powerful and smooth acceleration thereafter.

Handling stability and ride comfort are both improved through the location of major parts such as the Toyota FC Stack and high pressure hydrogen tanks centrally under the floor to achieve a low centre of gravity and superior front-and-rear weight distribution, as well as the use of a high-rigidity body, which features enhanced rigidity around the rear suspension.

 

Impressive driving dynamics

 

The full under-floor cover and aerodynamically designed clearance lights reduce wind resistance and contribute to improved fuel efficiency and handling stability. Aero fins employed at the side of the rear combination lamps also improve straight-driving stability.

Outstanding quietness is achieved by electric motor drive at all speeds and reduced wind noise, plus full sealing of all body parts, and the use of sound-absorbing and sound-blocking materials optimally arranged around the cabin, including the use of noise-reducing glass for the windshield and all door windows.

The  brake support mode makes efficient use of regenerative braking and improves braking performance when the driver wishes to greatly reduce vehicle speed such as when negotiating long downhill sections of road.

 

Mirai Main Vehicle Specifications

FC stack Name Toyota FC Stack
Type Polymer electrolyte fuel cell
Volume power density 3.1 kW/L
Maximum output 114 kW (155 DIN hp)
Humidification system Internal circulation (humidifier-less)
High-pressure hydrogen tank Number of tanks 2
Nominal working pressure 70 MPa (approx. 700 bar)
Tank storage density 5.7 wt%
Tank internal volume 122.4 liters (front tank: 60.0 liters; rear tank: 62.4 liters)
Motor Type AC synchronous electric generator
Maximum output 113 kW (154 DIN hp)
Maximum torque 335 Nm
Battery Type Nickel-metal hydride
Dimensions, weight and roominess Length 4,890 mm
Width 1,815 mm
Height 1,535 mm
Wheel-base 2,780 mm
Track (front/rear) 1,535/1,545 mm
Minimum ground clearance 130 mm
Interior length 2,040 mm
Interior width 1,465 mm
Interior height 1,185 mm
Curb weight 1,850 kg
Seating 4

 

Wacth our Mirai video on YouTube for more details.

 

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Fuel cell: hybrid experience leading to the car of the future

Posted by: on November 14th, 2014 Comments Off

 

Thanks to its hybrid knowledge, Toyota created the first fuel cell production car. It is a vehicle driven by an electric motor powered by the electricity generated by the chemical reaction between on-board hydrogen and airborne oxygen. Compared to the Prius, the new Toyota Fuel Cell Sedan has replaced its combustion engine by a fuel cell stack and its fuel tank by a hydrogen tank. Two high-pressure tanks actually, that store the hydrogen at a pressure up to 700 bar and that can be filled up in about 3 minutes. The only emission is water.

Hydrogen + Oxygen --> Electricity + Water

 

Built on the hybrid architecture, the Toyota Fuel Cell Sedan features a battery, a boost converter, an electric motor and a power control unit for the handling of the 4 different phases of working.

At very low load driving, meaning at very low speeds or in traffic jams, it is the battery only that provides the energy to drive the car.

At low load driving, meaning at low speeds like in city centres, the fuel cell stack provides enough energy for feeding the electric motor and simultaneously charging the battery.

At high load driving, when a lot of power is required, the fuel cell stack and the battery work together in order to boost the acceleration.

And then, as for a hybrid car, energy is recovered during braking and used for recharging the battery.
The fuel cell stack is composed by hundreds of cells. In each cell it works as follows:

1. Hydrogen is supplied to the anode side.
2. Hydrogen molecules activated by the anode catalyst release electrons.
3. The electrons released from hydrogen travel from the anode to the cathode, creating an electrical current.
4. Hydrogen molecules that released electrons become hydrogen ions and move through the membrane
5. Hydrogen ions bond with oxygen and electrons on the cathode catalyst to form water.

By generating its own electricity from hydrogen, the fuel cell car can help make a future hydrogen based society a reality, and contributes to energy diversification.

Have a look at our Fuel cell video on YouTube!

 

 

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For the third time in a row Toyota tops the AutoBild Quality Report

Posted by: on December 12th, 2014 No Comments

Proud to be the First

Cologne, Germany – Today we are very proud to be placed first in the 2014 AutoBild Quality Report. For the third consecutive year Toyota tops the Germany`s leading magazine quality ranking. And a clear victory it was; with an overall score of 2.0 Toyota ranked well ahead of the competition, proving to be the most reliable among the 20 highest-volume car brands in Germany.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Selling green cars the green way

Posted by: on December 12th, 2014 No Comments

 

In 2015 the Louwman Group will inaugurate a brand new sustainable dealership for Toyota/Lexus in Arnhem (The Netherlands).

For Toyota, the environmental mobility pioneer, and Lexus the premium brand that has hybrid at its core – it is only natural that the sales process adopts the same environmental ethos as the products themselves.

 

 

Designed to achieve BREEAM Excellent rating the building will incorporate amongst many other environmental features solar panels, reinforced insulation and will make use of renewable energy by means of an air heat pump.

This will be an ultramodern building that shall seamlessly integrate into the local environment located on the Ijsseloord business park along the N325 and A12 motorways.

The development which held its ground-breaking ceremony in October was supported by Eric Louwman (Louwman Group President) and Rijk de Jager (Branch Manager Louwman Arnhem) and continues to demonstrate Toyota and Lexus’ commitment in sustainable business practices.

 

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Toyota is the most successful brand in the 2015 TĂśV report

Posted by: on December 8th, 2014 1 Comment

 

The end of the year is approaching quickly and we are looking back to this year’s achievements. Toyota is the most reliable car for the eighth year in a row according to Consumer Reports’ annual ranking, is still the most valuable automotive brand on this year’s Best Global Brands classification and here is now the 2015 TĂśV* report in which we are the most successful manufacturer.

 

Some details:

Toyota ends up in the top ten 13 times, of which eight times are the five best cross-segment age categories. Toyota models are again among the most reliable cars in Germany, with very few shortcomings shown in the main tests.

In the category four to five year old cars, Toyota iQ and Avensis share the third place. With a score of 6.5% they show only half of the average number of defects in this age group. In the category six to seven year old cars, Toyota Auris landed on fourth place, Corolla Verso on the fifth and Yaris on the eighth spot. In the category eight to nine years, Toyota keeps its lead position: Corolla Verso ranks second and RAV4 third.  Corolla and Avensis are additional two models that end up in the top ten.

Also in the category 10 to 11 year old cars, four Toyota models are among the top ten cars – impressive evidence of the reliability, long term quality and durability of Toyota cars.

 

The latest TĂśV report is based on the results of 8.5 million investigations that were carried out. The organisation has compared 226 models in total. The yearly study, conducted together with the magazine Auto Bild, is considered an important guide for buyers of both new and used cars.

(*)TĂśV: Technischer Ăśberwachungs-Verein, English: Technical Inspection Association

 

 

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