Elected officials today got a chance to gaze into the future. Toyota and Air Liquide hosted a “ride-and-drive” experience with Toyota’s new hydrogen electric fuel cell vehicle called the Mirai which will go on sale this year.
As the infrastructure is still in progress, Air Liquide displayed a hydrogen dispenser to give users a better feel and understanding of how the hydrogen refueling experience will work.
“After more than a century with the automobile, we are making decisions about socially significant technologies aimed at building a true hydrogen society over the next 100 years”, said Steve Ciccone, Group Vice President, Government Affairs for Toyota. “Just as Prius styling was distinctive when it was introduced and still is today we think Mirai will be as well…. If the name of your car means ‘the future’ we feel it should look futuristic.”
Air Liquide and Toyota have announced a collaboration to develop a fully-integrated hydrogen fueling infrastructure in the Northeast U.S., which will include a network of state-of-the-art hydrogen fueling stations.
“A reliable hydrogen infrastructure is essential to the widespread adoption of hydrogen as a clean and sustainable energy solution for consumers today and into the future,” said Ole Hoefelmann, CEO of the Advanced Business and Technologies Americas division of Air Liquide. “Hydrogen is not only the energy source for zero emission vehicles, it is the cornerstone of a broad infrastructure to power and enable sustainable energy production, distribution and storage for industry, communities and generations to come.”
The Mirai, which can travel up to 300 miles on a single tank of hydrogen, refuel in less than five minutes and is a zero emission vehicle (ZEV) will be available for sale in the Northeast beginning in 2016.
Several members of the New York State Legislature and key government officials discussed hydrogen fuel cell technology with technical experts from Air Liquide and Toyota and had an opportunity to enjoy the driving experience and capabilities of the Mirai on the streets of Albany.