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Toyota Takes Fuel-Cell Cars Further, Patents Are Free

January 6, 2015

Toyota Takes Fuel-Cell Cars Further, Patents Are Free

In an effort to get fuel-cell cars off the ground, Toyota is giving automakers free access to some 5680 patents, following in the footsteps of Elon Musk, who did the same last year for Tesla's electric car.

Toyota is making the patents available through 2020, "the initial market introduction period" of fuel cell vehicles. And it will soon also make patents available for hydrogen fueling stations.

"By allowing royalty-free use of FCV-related patent licenses, Toyota is going one step further as it aims to promote the widespread use of FCVs and actively contribute to the realization of a hydrogen-based society," the company says.

In December, Toyota started selling the world's first mass-produced fuel cell vehicle - the Mirai sedan - in Japan, and sales begin late this year on the east and west coast of the US, and in some European countries, like UK, Denmark and Germany. The goal is to sell more than 3,000 cars in the next two years, but it may well exceed that given the thousands of pre-orders from government agencies and fleets.

With two hydrogen tanks under the seats, Mirai has a range of 400-435 miles, and can accelerate from 0-60 miles per hour in 9 seconds. A powertrain with an electric motor and fuel cell stack replaces the gasoline engine. It will retail around $45,000 after federal and state incentives in the US, and fueling is free in California.

Read more at SustainableBusiness.com.

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