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Car Review

Toyota Mirai review

£49,940 - £65,945
Published: 04 May 2021


What should I be paying?

Odd to call this section 'owning' when most of its drivers won't. Initially at least, it will be leased only, starting at £435 on business contract hire (whereas the old one was £750). If you want full prices, it starts at £49,995, with top spec versions costing £64,995 with all the fancy self-parking and swish 20in wheels (which don’t appear to bugger up the ride).

This isn't just about strolling into your local Toyota dealership, though. To stop them - and you - looking foolish by putting you into a car you can't fuel, all transactions are via Toyota's UK HQ. They'll be concentrating on high-profile green fleets near to hydrogen supply and won’t let you have a car if you live far from a filling station.

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And even so, the Mirai needs to be regularly pounding long daily distances to make sense. Otherwise, an EV plugged in overnight does the job. Maybe the ideal customer is a 24-hour cab company, taking advantage of the quick refuel times to keep the car running round the clock.

They don't need to stay that close to the pump. Range is a claimed 406 miles, but that's not a WLTP figure so treat it with a degree of caution. Even so it looks better than EVs. A Hyundai Nexo has slightly more tank volume, however.

It's not a money-saving car in the UK. Hydrogen is sold by mass, and it's at least £10/kg in the UK. The Mirai's tanks hold 5.6kg, giving fuel costs per mile close to petrol equivalents. That's far more per mile than a pure battery car.

In some other countries, hydrogen stations are closer together than here. And they serve locally produced hydrogen from renewable energy at a fraction of the UK price. Then the Mirai would make a case for itself.

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Fuel cell vehicles used to be unworkable in very cold weather, but this one will do a start-up in -30 degrees C, which is enough unless you're planning a trip to the Arctic.

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