Filed under: Sedan , Technology , Toyota , Electric Toyota is requesting an exemption from federal safety regulations that govern electric cars as it prepares to launch a small-scale hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle fleet. The Japanese automaker is targeting Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 305 , which covers the packaging of high-voltage parts in electric cars. According to Uncle Sam, these systems need to be isolated so that passengers and first responders aren’t electrocuted in the event of a crash. That seems pretty smart, but it’s become a problem for Toyota’s upcoming production fuel cell vehicle, as the mechanism that prevents electric shocks in low-speed crashes will apparently simply keep Toyota’s car from even functioning. Instead of the federally approved system, Bloomberg reports that Toyota plans to insulate the high-voltage wires and cables in the car, along with shielding electrical components like the fuel cells, electric motor and batteries with (presumably non-conductive) metal barriers. It’s unclear if the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will bow to Toyota’s request, but the government safety watchdog might be swayed in light of the fact that the company is targeting a very small number of sales – 2,500 per year – and it still has a plan in place to protect first responders and vehicle occupants. Toyota asking NHTSA for fuel cell car safety exemption regarding electric shocks originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 30 Jun 2014 16:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds . Permalink
Filed under: Concept Cars , Hybrid , Sedan , Japan , Tokyo Motor Show , Toyota Toyota is out to prove that the fuel cell vehicle isn’t as dead as we thought. Despite the fact that a hydrogen infrastructure is no closer to reality now than it was five years ago, the company unveiled its FCV-R Concept at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show . Engineers snugged the fuel cell unit beneath the passenger cell to preserve passenger and cargo capacity. The FCV-R Concept boasts space for four and their gear, and Toyota claims that the vehicle has a range of around 435 miles. That works for us. Currently, the FCV-R is only a concept, though it’s interesting to see Toyota playing with hydrogen fuel cell technology once again. Will the tech eventually make its way to the road? Here’s hoping. Toyota has already made it clear the automaker wants to see the Prius range become its best-selling nameplate in the near future, and a fuel-cell version could be part of those plans. Hit the jump for the full press release.