• Germany’s Center of Automotive Management selects the 100 most disruptive automotive innovations
• Comparison of over 8,000 innovations in the automotive industry of the last decade has resulted with the fuel cell vehicle leading the ranking
• Launched in 2012, the Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid landed in third place in the ranking
The Toyota Mirai is the outstanding innovation of the past decade: the fuel cell vehicle landed at the top of the Germany‘s Center of Automotive Management’s (CAM) ranking of the world’s 100 most significant automotive engineering innovations.
With the first European customers taking delivery in the coming weeks in Germany, Denmark and the UK, this hydrogen-powered zero emission sedan ushers in a new era to the automotive world as we know it.
To make their ranking, the CAM team, based in Bergisch Gladbach and headed by Prof. Dr. Stefan Bratzel, closely examined more than 8,000 new innovations in the period from 2005 to 2015. These were rated according to their relevance to the market and industry as well as their innovativeness.
The winner was world’s first mass-produced fuel cell sedan to become available to the public. Hydrogen is transformed in the fuel cell stack into electricity which powers the 114 kW/155 HP electric engine. FCVs are zero emission vehicles, emitting only water during driving. They are as easy to use as conventional vehicles and are capable of long trips thanks to their range and refuelling time, both comparable to those of a petrol car.
The Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid is another winner of the CAM survey and another first of its kind: the first mass-produced plug-in can be charged using any standard household socket and in addition to5.2 kW/h electricity uses just 2.1 litres of fuel per 100 kilometres, which corresponds to 49 grams of CO2 emissions per kilometre. In the ranking of the 100 most significant innovations, that means a third place.
Trend: Powertrain shift: 85% of all worlds’ automotive patents are issued in alternative powertrains with Hybrids having the biggest share
Trend Leader: Toyota with 26% of the world’s patents
A recent study conducted by the Germany’s Center of Automotive Management (CAM) at the University of Applied Scienses FHDW, has spotted a persisting trend in the automotive industry’s patents issued by carmakers: conventional internal combustion engines research has stagnated over the years, whereas research on the alternative (or shall we say the “new mainstream”) Hybrid and EV powertrains has moved to the leading position in the research volume.