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Toyota Mirai sets 845-mile hydrogen mileage record

Toyota's hydrogen fuel cell Mirai travels a record-setting distance between fill-ups with the help of professional hypermilers and simple maintenance.

2021 Toyota Mirai

Battery electric vehicles are currently the belle of the green car ball, but Toyota's hydrogen-powered Mirai makes a compelling case for keeping an invite to the party open for fuel cell EVs. To illustrate, Toyota has laid claim to the Guinness World Record for the longest distance traveled by a fuel cell vehicle without refueling, completing an 845-mile trip around Southern California.

The record-making attempt took place over two days on Aug. 23 and 24 this year with professional hypermiler Wayne Gerdes behind the wheel and Bob Winger as his co-pilot. After a 5-minute fill-up, the 2021 Mirai's tank was sealed and certified by Guinness World Records officials before the team departed the Toyota Technical Center in Gardena, California. The Mirai traveled to San Ysidro, then Santa Barbara, then continued along the Pacific Coast Highway through Santa Monica and Malibu before returning to Gardena. The team arrived back at TTC with 473 miles logged by GPS. 

Guinness World Records official certified that the Mirai's H2 tank remained sealed at the beginning and end of the record attempt.


On Day 2, the team resumed their driving, logging 372 more miles on a local loop before coasting back to TTC with a grand total of 845 miles driven. Guinness officials then confirmed that the FCEV's tank seal had not been tampered with and began the process of certifying the record attempt. 

Toyota tells us that the Mirai averaged 152 miles per gallon equivalent and consumed a total of 5.65 kilograms of hydrogen over the two days of testing. with its only tailpipe emission being water. The automaker estimates that a combustion-powered sedan would have emitted about 664 pounds of CO2 over the same distance. I pulled up the EPA's numbers to do the math myself and it more or less checks out: A similarly sized Toyota Avalon V6 would have exhausted around 352 grams per mile, totaling 658 pounds of CO2 for the total distance.

Bob Carter, executive VP of Toyota North America, accepts the official Guinness World Record with the record-setting Mirai.


The record-holding vehicle was unmodified; Toyota attributes its extended-range performance to a combination of proper maintenance and wheel alignment, fine-tuned tire pressure and hypermiling driving techniques.

"In 2016, the Toyota Mirai was the first production fuel cell electric vehicle available for retail sale in North America, and now the next-generation Mirai is setting distance records," said Bob Carter, executive vice president of Toyota Motor North America. "We are proud to be leaders of this exciting technology, which is just one of a growing lineup of zero-emission vehicles in our portfolio."