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Toyota FCV hydrogen-powered concept to make North American debut at CES

The Toyota FCV concept is just one big tease.

While the production Toyota hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle still won’t arrive until 2015, its maker plans to keep the public satiated with the concept version.

The latest FCV concept debuted last month at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show, and now it’s scheduled for a North American debut at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas January 6.

Alongside the concept, Toyota will display the “test mule” car used to test the new hydrogen powertrain on real-world roads.

Like the FCV, the production 2015 Toyota fuel-cell car will be a sedan, likely with much of the concept’s styling. That styling, by the way, is supposed to represent flowing water, a nod to the hydrogen fuel cell’s only emission. However, it looks more like a Lexus HS250 h with a garish body kit … and a hood that’s blown off.

Under the skin is some exquisite engineering, though. The FCV has a fuel-cell stack that is smaller than the ones used in previous low-volume Toyota fuel-cell cars, but it has a higher energy density. For the production version, it will reportedly be connected to an electric motor pulled from one of Toyota’s many hybrids.

Toyota reckons that car will have a 310-mile range, and will take just three minutes to refuel.

When it finally makes it to showrooms, the 2015 Toyota fuel-cell vehicle will compete with a production version of the Honda FCEV concept from the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. The Honda is also slated for a 2015 debut.

For now, though, all we have is the FCV concept. Look for it at CES in a few weeks, and probably other places over the coming year.

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