MUSCAT: Toyota’s deep-rooted commitment to sustainable mobility was in the spotlight recently as the 2021 Toyota Mirai set a new world record for the longest distance travelled by a hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) without refuelling. The class-leading vehicle achieved an unprecedented 1,360 km on a single, five-minute complete fill of hydrogen during a round trip tour of Southern California to claim the Guinness World Records title and set a new distance milestone for zero emission vehicles.
The official record attempt was closely monitored by Guinness World Records in accordance with its strict rules and documentation procedures. The efficiency-focused journey took place on August 23 and 24, with the Mirai logging an impressive 64.6 km/L and producing water as its only emission. To ensure total transparency, Guinness World Records adjudicator Michael Empric validated the vehicle’s fuel tank with a seal at both the beginning and end of the journey.
“We are delighted to achieve this landmark for sustainable mobility with the Mirai, a pioneering vehicle that heralds a new era of efficient electrified and hydrogen-driven transportation. This comes as part of our continuing drive to develop diversified mobility solutions that offer people more ways to move safely, responsibly, and in harmony with the environment,” said Kei Fujita, Chief Representative, Middle East and Central Asia Representative Office, Toyota Motor Corporation.
“With car buyers around the world becoming increasingly eco-conscious, we are confident that the Mirai will set a precedent for future vehicles that will help to create a carbon-neutral society where people can enjoy a happy, healthy, and sustainable life, with greater mobility for all. I would like to thank our customers for their support, which continues to inspire us on our journey to develop ‘ever-better’ cars for a more sustainable tomorrow.”
The Mirai was driven by professional hypermiler Wayne Gerdes and co-piloted by Bob Winger. Its two-day trip commenced at the Toyota Technical Center (TTC) in Gardena, California, home of Toyota’s fuel cell development group. The duo travelled south to San Ysidro and then north to Santa Barbara cruising through Santa Monica and Malibu beach along the Pacific Coast Highway. The vehicle returned to TTC that evening having logged 761 km with only two driver swaps.
On the second day, the team pushed through 599 more kilometres of morning and afternoon rush hour traffic on the San Diego freeway until the Mirai had no hydrogen left and coasted into TTC with a grand total of 1,360 km driven, as witnessed by Guinness World Records adjudicator Michael Empric.
“As a Guinness World Records adjudicator for 10 years, I’ve had the opportunity to witness incredible attempts, including several distance-related feats,” said Empric. “The Toyota Mirai’s journey without the need to refuel showcases the power of fuel cell electric technology. This technology and the design ingenuity by the team at Toyota led to a history-making moment.”
By the end of the trip, the Mirai had consumed a total of 5.65kg of hydrogen and passed a total of 12 hydrogen stations along the drive routes without refuelling. The Mirai was driven mainly during rush hour traffic in temperatures between 18 to 28 degrees Celsius. It emitted zero pounds of CO2, whereas a standard internal combustion engine vehicle would have emitted about 301 kg of CO2 over the same distance.
The 2021 Toyota Mirai is a rear-wheel-drive sports-luxury FCEV that offers a combination of striking design, cutting-edge technology, and premium driving performance. Toyota’s advanced technology enables the vehicle to produce its own electricity using an on-board fuel cell. First developed in 1992, FCEV technology converts hydrogen and oxygen into electricity to power an electric motor, with only water as a by-product. The new-generation Mirai offers a class-leading cruising range and can be refuelled in just 3 to 5 minutes.