Toyota announces heavy-duty fuel cell truck with astonishing range
Together with in-house truck specialist Hino, Toyota is working on another fuel cell powered vehicle. As part of the "Toyota (and Hino) Environmental Challenge 2050", we are looking at another commercial application of the green technology that hasn't been very popular in the western hemisphere - a heavy-duty truck. Although this is not a complete novelty, the vehicle in question is supposed to trump previous developments in terms of range (by far).
With the help of a newly developed large capacity high-pressure hydrogen tank, which will be able to withstand pressures of up to 70 megapascals, Toyota is aiming for a range of up to 600 kilometers.
The 25-ton beast will be powered by Toyota's Polymer electrolyte fuel cell stack paired with an AC synchronous electric motor. In terms of dimensions, the fuel cell truck is based on the Hino Profia (also known as the Hino 700 outside of Japan).
Mercedes has been testing out their version of a large electric commercial vehicle for three years now. Their delivery truck "eActros" is scheduled to go into mass production in 2021 but its range will be limited to about 200 kilometers.
As previously mentioned, we're not entering completely new territory here, but compared to its (battery) electric rival from Mercedes, the fuel cell truck will not only be able to do local deliveries very efficiently. It can also be used in the long-haul transportation business without losing precious time at a charging station making it also somewhat independent of a rather sparse hydrogen fuel station network.
In my opinion, these developments are a lot more urgent than the electrification of smaller cars. But what's your opinion? Let us know in the comments!