Lexus unveils hydrogen-fueled off-road vehicle with near zero emissions

Lexus unveils hydrogen-fueled off-road vehicle with near zero emissions

Toyota’s luxury vehicle division, Lexus has recently developed a prototype for an off-highway vehicle which is rigged with a combustion engine that is powered by hydrogen instead of petrol.

The vehicle is identical to a regular ROV (recreational off-highway vehicle) in many ways, including chunky tires and exposed suspension, but features Lexus' primary hydrogen engine.

As per the auto brand, the ROV concept generates "near-zero emissions" by using hydrogen as a substitute fuel.

This fuel is stocked in a high-pressure tank at the rear of the vehicle, which is protected by a sleek black shielding cage and a lightweight dark-bronze body.

Unlike Lexus's LF-FC concept car from 2015 — which was a FCEV (fuel cell electric vehicle) driven by hydrogen — the ROV concept perceives hydrogen inserted straight into the combustion chamber of a one-liter engine, which works similarly to that of a normal fossil-fuel vehicle.

To appeal to automotive purists, Lexus says that this conserves the engine tone and instant responsiveness that can be lost with a battery-powered vehicle.

Significantly, the new hydrogen engine does not produce any emissions, with only a slight amount of engine oil burned throughout driving, said Lexus.

However, the brand has not declared anything related to integrating a similar hydrogen-powered motor onto its actual fleet.

At present, two of the hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles from the most recognized carmakers, i.e. Toyota Mirai and the Hyundai Nexo, are already on the market.

Other brands also have similar cars in the pipeline, from BMW iX5 Hydrogen to Land Rover's Defender.

Moreover, many car manufacturers have recently signed a multifaceted deal proposed at COP26 last month to shift to 100 percent zero-emission cars and vans. Although only Volkswagen, Ford, Daimler, Lexus-owner Toyota, and Honda were the top five manufacturers that signed the deal.

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