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Prototype Corolla Cross Hydrogen Concept

Hydrogen combustion is another important path on the journey to zero emissions
After its development was accelerated in the hothouse of Japanese motorsport, a prototype hydrogen combustion road car is being tested and evaluated. Meet the prototype Corolla Cross Hydrogen Concept! Hydrogen combustion is another possible alternative path to zero emissions. 

Many paths; one journey

At Toyota we believe it is too early to focus on one single zero emission solution globally. One reason is that we live in a world of dramatically varying customer needs and market environments. Our approach to carbon neutrality is therefore to offer multiple technologies to attain the ultimate goal of zero emission journeys. Examples include battery electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and hybrid electric. With hydrogen we follow two distinct paths. The hydrogen fuel cell of the Mirai. And we are working on our hydrogen combustion technology, as showcased by the prototype of the Corolla Cross Hydrogen Concept.

Developed in the crucible of motorsport

“Where can we accelerate development of a hydrogen powered car?” asked our engineers. The answer? The Super Taikyu endurance races in Japan! Consequently, Toyota participated in the complete 2022 season with a hydrogen combustion GR Corolla H2. These intensely competitive races proved the perfect testbed. By the end of the season the car’s combustion power had increased by 24% and torque by 33%. Range had expanded by 30% and refuelling time cut from 5 minutes to 90 seconds! With the car offering dynamic performance on par with a conventional petrol engine, it was time to take the next step …

A prototype hydrogen combustion road car

Toyota’s engineers equipped the 1.6l 3-cylinder turbo engine from the GR Corolla with high-pressure hydrogen direct injection engine technology from motorsport activity. They added the hydrogen tank packaging know-how from the Toyota Mirai. The result was a Corolla Cross hydrogen prototype capable of transporting five passengers and their luggage. Real-world evaluation is currently being carried out alongside ongoing digital development, with the vehicle soon to begin winter testing in northern Japan.

Hydrogen combustion offers great potential

Hydrogen combustion offers key benefits. The ability to leverage existing internal combustion engine technologies. Quick refuelling times. A significant reduction in the need for limited supply elements like lithium and nickel. Toyota believes that hydrogen combustion could lead to widespread, accessible carbon-reduction solutions faster. There’s certainly a clear opportunity for hydrogen combustion cars in motorsports!