The Toyota Mirai hydrogen fuel cell vehicle could signal the future of motoring with a somewhat accessible price and cutting-edge green technology, but there's no guarantee for the model actually spearheading a revolution in the marketplace. In the meantime, the Japanese brand is continuing to focus on its hybrid powertrains and actually plans to build even more of them. As soon as next year, half of Toyota's sales in Japan could be electrically assisted.
According to the Nikkei Asian Review, Toyota is pushing to sell 760,000 hybrids in Japan in 2016, compared to 684,000 last year. That figure would account for half of the company's sales in that country, and the company plans to increase overall production of its gas-electric models. The automaker could build 1.32 million of them next year, which would be about 30 percent more than in 2014.
There's actually a financial incentive for Toyota to try this green strategy. Japan's rules for tax breaks on efficient models are about to get more stringent. According to the Nikkei Asian Review, only about half of all new models are expected to meet the guidelines for the incentives, compared to over 80 percent now, and the change could cost buyers as much as 100,000 yen ($840) more. With the impending debut of the next-gen Prius and heightened hybrid production, Toyota can position itself as an attractive choice to customers.