Has Toyota made a hydrogen and EV AE86? Maybe, it could be the only way to keep them alive

As far as sentimental messages goes, “Toyota: Leaving no car lovers behind” is right up there at the eye-twinkling top. It’s also the theme behind their pavillion at this week’s Tokyo Auto Salon (TAS) where they’ll be displaying new cars alongside older ones with a fresh lease of life.

True to the identity, Toyota will be showcasing two AE86 Corollas amidst all their newfangled racers. The carmaker says that they will “exhibit concept cars that propose that customers can continue to drive forever in their beloved cars while taking on the challenge of reducing CO2 emissions”, which lends greater credence that the pair of classics will use emission-free propulsion.

Converting conventional engines to run on hydrogen is plug-and-play; only change the fuel tank and injectors

This enhanced focus on carbon-neutrality could mean that this pair are fuelled by hydrogen and carbon-neutral synthetic fuels (CNF).

In an era that increasingly pressures automakers to greenify their line-up, Toyota believes that existing cars on the road must also be addressed to be emissions-free, instead of blindly submitting to an ‘EV-only’ future.

Also read: To continue his teacher’s dream, Akio Toyoda is racing in Thailand to show 5 solutions are better than 1

The hydrogen-burning GR Corolla

Development work on such projects have hit the road, with ORC Rookie Racing – President Toyoda’s privately-owned team – fielding a hydrogen GR Corolla and a CNF GR86 in races around the globe. These cars utilise regular combustion engines, albeit (lightly) modified to take in alternative fuels.

Corolla Cross Hydrogen Concept

There’s a hydrogen-combusting Toyota Corolla Cross as well, serving as a development test bed for the technology to be adapted for today’s cars. Our feature on that, which contains insight from the engineering team, can be read here.

Also read: This humble 6MT hydrogen-burning Toyota Corolla Cross may be enthusiasts’ saving grace, here’s why

Beyond the classics, Toyota’s TAS booth from 14- to 15-Jan 2023 is set to feature their GR-010 Hybrid Le Mans racer, the aforementioned GR track duo, and several iterations of the GR Yaris. GR will also be announcing new GR Parts, as well as heritage parts for older models too.

Source: Has Toyota made a hydrogen and EV AE86? Maybe, it could be the only way to keep them alive

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