The Toyota Mirai Hydrogen Fuel Cell: The Complete Guide For Ireland

oyota Mirai Hydrogen
Price: N/A
Type of electric vehicle: Fuel-Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV)
Body type: Saloon
Battery size: N/A
Electric range (WLTP): 575 km
Tailpipe emissions: 0g (CO2/km)

Electric Cars: The Basics

For those of you new to zero-emission electric driving, we recommend a read of the following articles:

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The Toyota Mirai Hydrogen

Toyota Motor Corporation, known simply as Toyota, is a leading global automotive company. The company is one of the largest automobile manufacturers in the world and is headquartered in Aichi, Japan. The company has already established an enviable track record for the development and marketing of environment friendly hybrid vehicles. Toyota has one of the largest portfolios of mild hybrid electric vehicles (MHEVs), currently 11 hybrid models. It is also a world leader in fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs). The company currently has a portfolio of the following fully electric and plug-in electric vehicles:

Toyota is not new to hydrogen technology, and in fact, the Japanese automotive manufacturer has been developing hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) since 1996. The Mirai first-generation was launched in 2014 and the second-generation unveiled in 2019. In Japanese, Mirai means ‘future’.

For those new to hydrogen electric cars, yes, a fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV), also known as fuel cell vehicle (FCV) or hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, is an electric vehicle (EV). In a battery-electric vehicle (BEV) i.e. an all-electric car, the vehicle is powered by an onboard EV battery, while in a FCEV, the EV is powered using a fuel cell stack, that generates electricity through a chemical process involving oxygen and compressed hydrogen.

Yes, you guessed it correctly. There is no internal combustion engine (ICE) in a FCEV. Yes, ICE is the technology that powers conventional petrol and diesel cars. FCEVs are not recharged like BEVs. Instead, FCEVs are refuelled with hydrogen, just like filling up a tank of fuel in a conventional car. In both, a hydrogen-fuelled car and an all-electric battery car, the wheels are driven by electric motors.

FCEVs have a tailpipe, unlike 100% battery-electric vehicles, that do not have a tailpipe. However, the tailpipe in a FCEV only emits water vapour (a by-product of the process within the fuel stack) and no pollutants. FCEVs have a fuel tank for filling hydrogen, while BEVs have no fuel tank.  A battery-electric vehicle has an onboard EV battery.

The mid-sized Mirai hydrogen electric car has a 142.2 L tank capacity with a claimed zero-emission electric range up to 575 km on a full tank. Just like battery-electric cars, the real-world electric range will be impacted by a number of factors, to include: driving speed, driving profile, weather conditions, tyre size, onboard services used, passenger load etc. Expect the real-world range to be lower than the claimed range. In any case, the hydrogen electric car has impressive e-range!

One of the key advantages of hydrogen electric cars versus battery-electric cars, is that, FCEVs are refuelled in the same manner as a convention petrol or diesel car. The Mirai hydrogen car can be fully refuelled within 5 minutes at a dedicated hydrogen refuelling station. The Mirai has a 5.6 kg tank.

However, the infrastructure for hydrogen fuelling is still nascent globally and Ireland is no different. However, plans for accelerating hydrogen refuelling infrastructure in Ireland is gaining momentum. Some commentators suggest Ireland will have up to 80 hydrogen refuelling stations by 2030.

In terms of performance, the front-wheel drive Toyota Mirai hydrogen car can achieve 0-100 km/h in 9.2 seconds. The maximum power delivered by the FCEV is 182 hp and 300 Nm torque. The top speed is 175 km/h.

The four-door hydrogen saloon has a comfortable interior, however, the sloping roofline does impact the available headroom for the rear seat passengers. Moreover, the rear visibility is also impacted. The EV offers a 278 L boot space.

The automotive manufacturers offers a number of features and technology, to include: Toyota Touch® 2 with Go Navigation, Toyota Touch® 2 multimedia system, smartphone integration (Apple CarPlay & Android Auto), reversing camera, pre-collision system with pedestrian and cyclist detection, lane departure alert (LDA) with steering control, road sign assist (RSA) and more.

Bottom-line, electric driving, in all forms, is good for the environment and the wallet!

Good electric rangeLimited public hydrogen refuelling infrastructure
Quick to refuelExpensive
Comfortable and refined driveLimited boot space and headroom in the rear impacted by the sloping roofline


The All-Electric Toyota Mirai Hydrogen Fuel Cell (credit: Toyota)

At A Glance
EV Type:Fuel-Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV)
Body Type:Saloon
Available In Ireland:No

Variants (3 Options)
Mirai Design (from € N/A)
Mirai Design Plus (from € N/A)
Mirai Design Premium (from € N/A)

Tank Capacity & Emissions
Fuel Tank Capacity (L):142.2
Refuelling:5 minutes
Tailpipe Emissions:0g (CO2/km)
Warranty:10 years or 160,000 km

Height (mm):1470
Width (mm):1885
Length (mm):4975
Wheelbase (mm):2920
Turning Radius (m):5.8
Boot Space (L):278

Fuel Tank Capacity (L):142.2
Pure Electric Range (WLTP):575 km
Electric Energy Consumption
(kWh/100 km):
Refuelling:5 mins
Top Speed:175 km/h
0-100 km/h:9.2 seconds
Drive:Front-wheel drive (FWD)
Max Power (DIN hp):182
Torque (Nm):300
Kerb Weight (kg):1,900-1,905
NCAP Safety Rating:Five-Star

The Pros For Electric Cars

 Pros: Electric Vehicles (EVs)
Lower air pollution:One can never overestimate the negative impact of air pollution on the health of individuals, in particular, the vulnerable i.e. the children and the elderly. In Ireland, we have witnessed a significant increase in air pollution over the past decade, and yes, petrol and diesel tailpipe emissions have contributed to the worsening air quality across all our villages, towns and cities. Road transportation, though not the only source of pollutants, is a leading source, contributing up to 30%. Electric vehicles help reduce tailpipe emissions i.e. leading to improved air quality. Pure electric cars have no tailpipe, hence the expression ‘zero-tailpipe emissions’ or ‘zero-emissions’. PHEVs do have tailpipe emissions, given the hybrid nature of the vehicle (ICE and electric), but have far lower emissions than a conventional petrol or diesel car. Moreover, when a PHEV is driven on electric mode, the tailpipe emissions are zero! So bottom-line, both BEVs and PHEVs help improve air quality!
Lower running costs:It is a misconception that electric cars are more expensive than petrol and diesel cars. In fact, when electric cars costs are assessed on a life cycle basis, it is clear that EVs are cheaper to drive per km than internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. For a start, charging an EV battery can cost as little as 5 €, and in most cases less than 10 €. However, refuelling a tank of fuel can cost up to 120 € (if not more!). An EV costs between 5 and 10 cents per km to drive, significantly lower compared to the cost of driving a petrol or diesel car.
Lower maintenance costs:This is applicable only for BEVs. Pure electric cars have far fewer moving parts compared to an internal combustion engine (ICE) and therefore there is less that can go wrong i.e. lower maintenance costs.
Lower risk of breakdown:Given the fewer moving parts in an electric car, it is not surprising that EVs have a lower probability for a breakdown compared to petrol or diesel vehicles. Most EV drivers have become astute at ‘topping up’ the EV battery on a regular basis to avoid the risk of being stranded due to an empty EV battery, one of the reasons for seeking breakdown assistance.
Convenience of charging at home:Convenience: an EV can be charged at the convenience of your own home or office (no need to visit a petrol station!). In fact, most EVs are charged overnight at home, when the energy prices are the cheapest!
Lower energy price volatility:EV charging costs have a lower price volatility and lower risk of price inflation, compared to petrol prices (petrol prices continue to negatively impact household finances as fuel prices increase).
Solar panels can significantly reduce charging costs:Residential solar panels can be used to lower the cost of charging. Using residential PV solar, the cost of generating and consuming electricity is nominal, if not free (apart from the upfront costs). Both residential and commercial solar installations (for business premises) are ways to hedge against energy price inflation and achieve ‘well-to-wheel’ zero-tailpipe emissions.
Lower noise pollution:In general, electric cars are silent with an in-built artificial noise generator primarily for pedestrian safety. The lower noise from EVs help improve the quality of our living environment, in particular, those living close to busy roads and thoroughfares.
Instant torque:Yes, electric vehicles (EVs) have better torque performance than internal combustion engines, hence the torqueof the town’! If in doubt, look at a traffic light that has both these types of cars. As the signal changes to green, the electric car will quickly leave behind the diesel and petrol cars. The primary reason for the superior acceleration in electric cars, is that, electric vehicles deliver ‘peak or maximum torque’ instantaneously, producing immediate acceleration.  However, petrol and diesel cars take time to reach maximum or peak torque. In particular, diesel cars are known for being sluggish. Bottom-line, the better torque performance of electric cars, further contributes to the ‘fun factor’ in driving EVs compared to conventional cars.  
Better for the environment:Yes, apart from air pollution, in general, electric vehicles are better for the environment, given the lack of dependence on polluting fossil fuels.

The Cons For Electric Cars

 Cons: Electric Vehicles (EVs)
Retail prices expensive:It is true, in that, EVs are still expensive in regards to the retail price, compared to an equivalent petrol/ diesel car. However, the past few years has witnessed a reduction in the prices for EVs, along with the emergence of many affordable EV models. Moreover, aspiring owners of EVs have been able to take advantage of public grants. In our view, as the EV sector continues to mature with increased manufacturing volumes, consumer will gain from the inevitable price reduction as a result of the increased economies of scale. Moreover, the best way to acquire a car, is usually through a competitive financing plan like a lease, contract hire etc, making the acquisition of an EV affordable for many.
Limited DC charging infrastructure:Though 80% of EV charging is done overnight at home, public EV charging infrastructure remains a focal point for debates and aspiring/ current owners of EVs. In Ireland the public EV charging network is growing (2,000 charging points, mostly in urban areas). However, we agree that rapid DC charging infrastructure still needs to be deployed more widespread, helping EV drivers achieve a 0% – 80% EV battery charge in under 30 minutes.
Limited choice of EVs:There is no doubt that there has been a significant increase in the number of electric vehicles (EVs) that have been introduced over the past three years. However, the number of available pure electric cars are still limited in comparison to petrol and diesel vehicles. As global automotive manufacturers ramp-up the development and production of EVs, we expect the ‘consumer choice’ to widen significantly.
Limited availability of used EVs:Given the relatively nascent nature of the EV sector, it is not surprising that the used electric car market is still very small. We do expect the used EV marketplace to improve significantly in the coming years, giving aspiring EV owners a vast choice at competitive prices.

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Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include, the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising large-scale industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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