With the aim of achieving carbon neutrality, Toyota is pushing a lot on the use of hydrogen. Alongside the Fuel Cell solutions, the Japanese automaker is also working on hydrogen-fueled combustion engines. And in this regard, Toyota has just presented a prototype of the GR Yaris equipped with a hydrogen engine. The brand explains that the same powertrain that is present today on the experimental Corolla Sport that is competing in the Super Taikyu series in Japan was used.
THE TECHNOLOGY IS NOT READY YET
Toyota says the vehicle’s fuel tanks and refuelling process are the same as those found in the Mirai. As mentioned above, this prototype does not use a Fuel Cell system. Instead, we find a 1.6-litre in-line 3-cylinder G16E-GTS turbocharged internal combustion engine (that of the GR Yaris) with a modified fuel supply and injection system adapted to the use of hydrogen.
The manufacturer points out that it started developing hydrogen engines in 2017. This technology, however, is not yet ready for commercialization. A technical solution which, however, is giving good results on the Corolla and which has the advantage of being very clean since the exhaust emissions are almost nil.
The carmaker also says that using this technology, it is possible to offer a fun driving experience, with an acoustic and sensory feeling typical of internal combustion engines. Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota Motor Corporation, commented:
We took the first step to test and develop our hydrogen engine with a mindset to face the challenge. I imagine things will look a little different in 10 years and I hope people will look back and see how we approached the challenge with positivity, enjoying every moment.
The development of hydrogen engine technology continues in Japan through competitions where the Corolla prototype is engaged. After all, motorsport is the ideal place to put the new technical solutions to the whip.