Mayor of London, Boris Johnson visits Japan and takes a ride in Toyota Mirai

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, today welcomed news that some of the world’s most advanced new hydrogen cars are coming to London, as part of his work to pioneer the use of the cleanest, greenest technology for the future of transport and infrastructure in the capital.

Manufacturer Toyota is set to deliver 12 brand new Mirai hydrogen powered vehicles to London, where four will be taken on by Transport for London to assist with essential engineering and maintenance work carried out between bus stops and Tube stations. The Mirai is the first hydrogen fuel cell sedan vehicle to be commercially mass produced. By the end of this year, all 12 of the vehicles will be on the road in the capital, to be used by private hire fleets and green minded businesses including the energy storage and clean fuel company ITM Power.

Toyota has named London as a key city for early adoption of hydrogen vehicles this year and next, given the Mayor’s commitment to develop the necessary infrastructure and encourage motorists to move over to cleaner cars. The arrival of the new zero-emission cars is supported by the roll-out of vital new refuelling stations for hydrogen vehicles, and the Mayor’s plans to introduce the world’s first Ultra Low Emission Zone from 2020. In 2010, Transport for London launched the UK’s first and Europe’s largest fleet of hydrogen buses between Covent Garden and Tower Gateway. The service now runs eight buses across the route and is set to grow to ten in 2016.

The Mayor is currently on a three-day trade mission to Japan, where he today visited the headquarters of car manufacturing giant Toyota in western Japan and took one of the hydrogen powered Mirai for a test drive. He met with Toyota Senior Managing Officer Mr Kiyotaka Ise and General Manager Mr Yoshiaki Ito to discuss London’s position as a market for alternative fuel cars including hydrogen.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “It is fantastic that London will benefit from these new state-of-the-art hydrogen vehicles. By embracing this technology of the future, we aim to consolidate hydrogen’s role as a practical alternative fuel for the 21st century and beyond. I am sure that Transport for London will provide the ideal environment for us to see everything the Mirai can do and, in doing so, take another great step towards improving air quality in our city and protecting the health of Londoners.”

Paul Van der Burgh, President & Managing Director for Toyota (GB) PLC, said: “We have been delighted to welcome the Mayor of London to our headquarters in Japan to see for himself Toyota’s commitment to sustainable mobility. Toyota believes in hydrogen as a key enabler for building a future zero emissions society and we applaud the Mayor’s commitment to embracing new technology in his mission to make London a leading global city for low-emission, low-carbon transport.

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