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Sharing Toyota‘s stage with the production Prius Plug-in Hybrid at the Tokyo Motor Show are two eco-conscious concept cars that give a clear hint as the the automaker’s future green car plans. The FT-EV III Concept is a near production electric city car, that will go on sale next year (branded as a Scion in North America). Moving several years beyond is the FCV-R fuel cell concept. Looking like something that actually might make it to production, Toyota has said it plans to offer a fuel cell vehicle to fleets by 2015.
GALLERY: Toyota FCV-R Fuel Cell Concept
For more on both cars, watch the video below:
Fuel Cell Vehicles that run on electricity and emit nothing but water vapor may sound like a pipe dream, but Toyota is reconfirming its commitment to making them a reality by 2015 with the new FCV-R Concept. Unveiled today at the Tokyo Motor Show, the FCV-R (Fuel Cell Vehicle – Reality & Revolution) is a strong hint that Toyota is far more serious about mass production hydrogen fuel cell vehicles than it was when it first began testing the modified Highlander FCHV back in 2007.
Toyota has said it will offer a fuel cell model for fleet use in 2015 and while that is still a ways off, this new car is a strong indication of the serious nature of the project, giving it a unique design language (similar to the Prius family). The car is also an original model in that it doesn’t ride on an obvious donor platform. Details are still scarce but Toyota has said the car is roughly 185-inches, which for a size comparison is 4-inches shorter than the current Camry. That said, it’s significantly more substantial a vehicle than the Prius.
Impressively, Toyota claims an emissions free driving range of 430 miles in the FCV-R Concept. We expect to see further renditions of this concept over the next few years, becoming increasingly closer to production at each stage.
GALLERY: Toyota FCV-R Concept
Up first is the FT-EV III (Future Toyota – Electric Vehicle III). Based on the iQ, it uses a lithium-ion battery and electric motor and can travel up to 65 miles on a full charge and has room for four. Calling it a “near future” concept, Toyota will sell an electric iQ next year.
Perhaps the most exciting of the vehicles is the “mid-term” FCV-R (Fuel Cell Vehicle – Reality & Revolution) concept. Looking like the future of the Prius, it’s a larger car measuring 185-inches in length (just 4-inches short of the new Camry). Toyota claims a total driving range of 430 miles, emissions free! As the word “reality” in the car’s name suggests, Toyota is serious about this new car with plans to offer a fuel cell vehicle to fleets by 2015.
And finally, there’s the Toyota Fun-Vii (Fun-Vehicle interactive internet), which the automaker says,” heralds Toyota’s vision of a future where people, cars and society are linked.”
GALLERY: Toyota Tokyo Motor Show Preview
Celebrating 125 years of Mercedes-Benz, the appropriately named F125 is set to debut at the Frankfurt Auto Show tomorrow. Ahead of the planned reveal, however, photos and details of the Hydrogen Gullwing concept car have been leaked, giving a look at the future of Mercedes design, not to mention the German automaker’s plans to push ahead with hydrogen fuel cell technology.
With a less than stunning jellybean profile, the new concept does have some nicer angles, with an almost art deco look to the massive front grille. Much of the design cues are an evolution of the F800 Style Concept first shown at the Geneva Auto Show last year – although that car was arguably the better looking machine.
Power for the concept comes from a hydrogen fuel cell stack with four electric motors (one at each wheel). Generating 231-hp it is said to be able to hit 60 mph in 4.9 seconds. Total range is around 620 miles. In addition to all this, there’s a lithium-ion battery pack capable of offering 31 miles of non-hydrogen travel.
Look for more details tomorrow AutoGuide’s official Frankfurt Auto Show page here.
GALLERY: Mercedes F125 Hydrogen Gullwing Concept
Mercedes-Benz has announced that it will begin production of a zero-emissions hydrogen fuel-cell powered version of its compact B-Class model with sales starting in the U.S. and Europe next year.
Using a hydrogen-powered electric motor and a lithium ion battery pack, the F-Cell B-Class will make 134hp and 214 ft-lbs of torque. It will be capable of traveling 250 miles on a tank of hydrogen and get roughly 70 mpg.
“2009 is the year in which we are establishing further milestones where sustainable mobility is concerned. The B-Class F-CELL is taking on a pioneering role as the world’s first fuel cell powered automobile to be produced under series production conditions”, says Mercedes R&D boss Dr. Thomas Weber.
Like any Mercedes the B-Class F-Cell will be well equipped with leather, heated seats, automatic climate control and the Mercedes Command system.
In anticipation of the B-Class F-Cell hitting the market Mercedes is working with local governments in California as well as in Hamburg and Stuttgart in Germany to set up hydrogen refueling stations.
GALLERY: Mercedes B-Class F-Cell
Official release after the jump: