The year-long mystery of the Lexus HS 250h hydrogen fuel-cell prototype has been (at least partially) solved, as Toyota brought journalists to Japan this week to drive the still-camouflaged vehicle — from Bloomberg:
To demonstrate how far hydrogen cars have come since the early 2000s, Toyota gave test drives of a small, prototype sedan in Japan this week. A similar vehicle with a different exterior will debut at next month’s Tokyo Motor Show. The car, which showed quick acceleration and sharp handling, will arrive in the U.S., Japan and Europe as early as next year as a 2015 model.
The prototype driven this week had the new powertrain system in the chassis of a Lexus HS 250h, a model that is larger than a Corolla compact and smaller than a mid-size Camry, or about the size of a Prius. The new model, which will be sold under the Toyota brand, will be on a modified platform of the HS, which is sold as the Toyota Sai in Japan.
Toyota’s new model holds about 5 kilograms (11 pounds) of compressed hydrogen in tanks that can be fully refueled in three minutes, the company said.
While disappointing that the initial fuel cell vehicle will not be a Lexus, the technology is an exciting new development that will certainly make its way into Lexus vehicles in the future.