Toyota Aims High: Set to Revolutionize China & Europe with 200,000 Hydrogen-Powered Cars

Toyota Shifts Focus to Hydrogen-Powered Vehicles in Europe and China, Aiming to Sell 200,000 Units by 2030

Toyota has announced its plans to focus on the rollout of hydrogen-powered vehicles in Europe and China, with the aim of selling 200,000 units by 2030. This shift in strategy comes after the company revealed its plans to commercialize its revolutionary solid-state battery by 2027. Toyota is determined to become a world leader in battery EV energy consumption and recently unveiled its breakthrough in solid-state battery technology. However, the company’s latest plan to sell hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles outside of its home market is another significant development. Toyota has long placed a big bet on hydrogen fuel cells as an alternative to fossil fuels, but sales of its hydrogen-powered vehicles have not been as successful as anticipated. Since the launch of its fuel-cell Mirai in 2014, Toyota has sold less than 22,000 hydrogen cars. In 2022, the company sold just over 3,900 fuel cell vehicles, which is insignificant compared to its global sales of 9.5 million vehicles. The expensive cost of hydrogen and the lack of infrastructure, particularly hydrogen fueling stations, have been major obstacles. To address these challenges and reduce the costs of fuel-cell vehicles, Toyota will focus on the European and Chinese markets, where hydrogen demand and production are higher than in Japan. By increasing sales volume, the company aims to cut costs by almost half. Europe and the US have plans to supply 25 million tons of hydrogen annually by the end of the decade, while China aims to produce 40 million tons and Japan targets 3 million tons by 2030. Hydrogen fuel cells are considered better for longer-range, heavy-use vehicles due to their higher energy density. Toyota predicts that the global market for fuel cells will increase 15 times from 2020 levels to $35 billion by 2030, with other market estimates projecting even higher figures. To further expand the application of fuel cell technology, Toyota has established a dedicated hydrogen-focused division called the Hydrogen Factory, which currently employs more than 1,300 staff. The company aims to forge more partnerships in hydrogen technology, such as its recent deal with Daimler Truck Holding to merge their truck businesses. Other automakers, including Honda Motor, also have plans to sell tens of thousands of hydrogen-powered vehicles. Honda aims to achieve annual sales of 60,000 fuel cell vehicles in collaboration with General Motors by 2030. While Toyota’s decades-old knowledge in developing fuel cell technology gives it an advantage, it recognizes the potential of China as a major player in hydrogen-powered vehicles. Despite the challenges, Toyota remains confident in its ability to achieve its sales target of 200,000 hydrogen-powered vehicles, with Chief Technology Officer Hiroki Nakajima stating, “This may be a strange way of putting it, but 200,000 is not a big number… We believe this number and more can be achieved.”

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons

Matt Lyons is the founder of Forestry & Carbon. Matt has over 25 years as a forestry consultant and is invoilved in numerous carbon credit offset projects.

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