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Is Toyota's new hydrogen car about to 'change society'?- Nikkei Asian Review


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Cars powered by that colorless, odorless gas are not exactly new. What is new is the not-quite-so-astronomical price tag of a model the Japanese company plans to release sometime in the current fiscal year through next March. Toyota's car will go for about 7 million yen ($67,500); a decade ago, hydrogen fuel cell vehicles were estimated to cost around 100 million yen.

     "We have finally developed a car that can change society," Toyota Chairman Takeshi Uchiyamada told Shinzo Abe in mid-July, when the prime minister visited a hydrogen fueling station in the western city of Kitakyushu.

     Abe's growth strategy calls for making hydrogen a major energy source for the country. Large quantities of the gas are produced here as a byproduct at steel and chemical plants.   

     "Instead of importing crude oil, we can invest to develop and expand hydrogen supply infrastructure," Uchiyamada suggested to Abe, branding the new car "a solution to energy problems."

Now if they can just get that cost down to $6750 we'll be ready to embrace it.

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