The Mirai was the first Fuel-cell production vehicle, now in its second generation for the 2021 model year the car is bigger and packs more power along with several comfort and safety updates.
The world’s first Hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicle, the Mirai debuted five years ago and now there is the second generation that Toyota is rolling out. Available in two grades and based on Toyota’s premium platform, the car has new styling and many other technological advances to take forward the concept of a Hydrogen powered car in an ecosystem that is much more conducive for the use of such vehicles.
Designers at Toyota seem to have taken a page out of Lexus’ book, and styling feels much inspired by the Lexus GS sedan, even though dimensionally it is longer and wider. But perhaps the most noticeable change for users will be the shift to Rear wheel drive, which makes the Mirai feel more like a conventional vehicle at least in terms of driving dynamics. Exact power figures for the Mirai haven’t been released yet, but Toyota assures that the 2021 Mirai will have more power and more range than the outgoing model. Currently two trims of the Mirai are being launched, the XLE and the top end Limited.
For those who are not familiar with the concept of a fuel-cell electric vehicle, the mechanism basically converts hydrogen into electricity via the fuel cells just like a chemical lab would. The fuel cells strip the electrons off of the hydrogen atoms thus creating electricity, the hydrogen then bonds with oxygen to create water while the electrons are used for powering the motor. The concept uses chemical reactions instead of using battery power, thus a fuel-cell vehicle. The powertrain in the last Mirai made 151 hp and 245 lb-ft of instant torque, whereas more power has been added to the new Mirai. The old car managed a range of 312 Miles, which is expected to be exceeded by 30% thanks to the larger Hydrogen fuel cell to more than 400 miles for the 2021 model.
Toyota has promised that the New car will have its priorities on luxury and a more performance oriented powertrain to make the drive sportier. The car has been updated on the inside too and features standard equipment like a 12.3in infotainment system paired with 14 speakers from JBL, the system has Apple Carplay and Amazon Alexa pairing. The instrument cluster is now an 8in LCD, while a Qi-wireless charging pad is also added. The XLE features dual-zone climate control, heated front seats and electronic side mirrors, while the Limited has a Heads up display, three-zone climate control, front and rear ventilated/heated seats, rear touch panel for climate and audio controls, and fixed panoramic moonroof.
Safety is a priority for Toyota and the new Mirai is a fine example. It features Toyota Safety Sense-TSS 2.5+, Toyota’s next-gen safety suite which incorporates features like Automatic Emergency Braking, Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Full-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Lane Departure Alert, Lane Tracing Assist, Automatic High Beams and Road Sign Assist. While these features have been part of the suite for some time now, they have been majorly improved.
The Mirai now comes in new color options and rides on 19in Aluminium wheels as standard, with a 20in chrome finish wheel as option for the Limited trim. The 2021 Mirai is expected to cost around $64,000 ( INR 47 lakh) for the XLE and $69,000 (INR 51 lakh) for the Limited, the car is expected to reach Toyota dealers by December of this year. The outgoing car had a three-year free Hydrogen package, and the same should be offered for this one too.
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