The Most Affordable Hydrogen-powered Car In 2024

The FCEV (Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle) segment isn’t densely populated in the U.S. There are only two options: the Toyota Mirai and the Hyundai Nexo. The Mirai is the most affordable of the two, with a starting MSRP of $10,000 less than the Nexo’s base price.

The first generation of the Mirai was the world’s first mass-produced hydrogen-electric vehicle. Its second generation, currently on sale in the States, is an improvement across the board. It is better looking, has more features, has higher power output, and comes with a host of advanced safety systems.

As an FCEV, the Mirai offers an ideal balance of quick fill-ups, similar to a gas-powered vehicle, and a zero-emissions drive, akin to an electric car. If you are shopping for a hydrogen-electric vehicle (and live in California), read along to learn what makes the Toyota Mirai so unique.

In order to give you the most up-to-date and accurate information possible, the data used to compile this article was sourced from Toyota, Hyundai, and other authoritative sources, including and the U.S. Department of Energy.

2023 Toyota Mirai: Performance, Price, And Photos

Only available in the State of California, the Hydrogen-powered Mirai combines luxury, and style, serving as an alternative to an EV

Mirai’s Hydrogen-Electric Propulsion System Makes 182 Horsepower

Though the Toyota Mirai runs on hydrogen, it is driven by an electric motor. But unlike a BEV (battery electric vehicle), the electricity required to run this electric motor is not sourced from an external charger but is generated onboard the Mirai itself.

The Hydrogen from the tanks undergoes an electrochemical reaction in the Mirai’s fuel cell with the oxygen taken from the intakes. This reaction produces electricity, which is either stored in the onboard battery for later use or is used to power the electric motor.

2024 Toyota Mirai Specifications


Single Motor


Rear Wheel Drive


182 HP


300 HP


Single Speed Automatic

0 to 60 MPH

9.2 Seconds

(Specs Sourced From Toyota)

The Mirai comes with a single electric motor. It produces 182 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of peak torque and drives the rear wheels through a single-speed automatic transmission. Toyota claims the Mirai can sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 9.2 seconds.

A Low Center Of Gravity And 50:50 Weight Distribution

Red 2023 Toyota Mirai

Toyota has engineered the power unit components of the current-generation Mirai to be as compact as possible and placed them low in the engine bay. Due to the switch to the rear-wheel-drive configuration, the location of the fuel cell and drive systems has changed compared to the previous-generation model. All this clever engineering on Toyota’s part has resulted in the Mirai’s low center of gravity and a 50:50 weight distribution between the front and rear axles.

Here’s How Much It Costs To Refill A Hydrogen-powered Toyota Mirai

The Toyota Mirai is offered with $15,000 worth of free hydrogen for six years. This is how much you’ll pay to refuel once that runs out.

The Toyota Mirai Can Go 402 Miles Between Refills

The Mirai only has a 1.24 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. It has three hydrogen tanks made from carbon fiber-reinforced polymer to extend the range. The EPA hasn’t rated the 2024 Mirai yet for its fuel economy estimates. However, according to the agency, the 2023 model year Mirai XLE can go 402 miles on a single fill-up according to the EPA. The range drops to 357 miles for the range-topping 2023 Mirai Limited.

2023 Toyota Mirai Fuel Economy

2023 Toyota Mirai XLE

2023 Toyota Mirai Limited

Fuel Type



EPA Estimated Fuel Economy (City)

76 MPG

67 MPG

EPA Estimated Fuel Economy (Hwy)

71 MPG

64 MPG

EPA Estimated Fuel Economy (Combined)

74 MPG

65 MPG

EPA Estimated Range

402 Miles

357 Miles

(Fuel Economy Data Sourced From The EPA)

Fills Up In Five Minutes

The Lucid Air has one of the quickest charging times among electric vehicles sold in the U.S. Its 112 kWh battery pack can be juiced up from 10 percent to 80 percent in 15 minutes when connected to a 350 kW DC fast charger. Toyota says filling up the Mirai’s three hydrogen tanks will take an estimated five minutes.

However, there is a catch. Currently, there are only 55 working Hydrogen filling stations in the United States, all in California. So, while the Mirai offers one of the highest driving ranges among electric cars, you can only buy and drive it within the Golden State.

How Much Does It Cost To Fill Up The Toyota Mirai?

The Mirai has three hydrogen tanks: one under the central stack, one under the rear passenger seat, and one under the luggage compartment. They have a combined capacity to carry 5.6 kilograms of hydrogen. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, one kilogram of hydrogen equals two gallons of gas in terms of energy.

True Zero, the leading hydrogen supplier in California, retails the gas at its stations at $36 per kilogram. Based on that estimate, filling up the Mirai would cost $208.8, depending on which filling station you use. That’s $151 more expensive than filling up the 15.8-gallon fuel tank of the 2024 Toyota Camry with gas.

It is $171 more expensive than charging the Hyundai Ioniq 5’s 77.4 kWh battery pack through a DC fast charger. Thankfully, Toyota sells the Mirai with a $15,000 hydrogen credit, valid for the first six years of purchase. The duration drops to three years in case of a lease.

10 Things To Know About The Hydrogen-powered Toyota Mirai

This second-generation Mirai is kind of ahead of its time, and here’s what makes it special.

The Toyota Mirai Comes With An Upscale Interior

Interior of the Toyota Mirai

The Mirai offers a host of features. Since its range starts with the XLE trim, you won’t feel the cabin is sparsely equipped even if you pick the ‘base’ Mirai. Standard tech includes a color LCD instrument cluster, a 12.3-inch touchscreen multimedia system with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and a 14-speaker JBL sound system.

Standard Features Available On The 2024 Toyota Mirai

  • 19-inch twin-spoke alloy wheels
  • Heated outside mirrors
  • Auto-leveling LED headlights
  • UV-protected water-repellent side windows
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel
  • Auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink
  • Heated front seats
  • SofTex-trimmed seats (Toyota’s vegan leather upholstery)
  • Eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat
  • Four-way power-adjustable front passenger seat

The range-topping Limited adds many other features, such as a color heads-up display, three-zone automatic climate control with a separate digital control panel for the rear passengers, a power rear-window sunshade, a digital rearview mirror, dual-pane panoramic moonroof, and heated and ventilated front and rear seats.

Standard Safety Systems On The 2024 Toyota Mirai

  • Toyota Safety Sense
  • Blind-Spot Monitoring
  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Stability Control
  • Traction Control
  • Hill Start Assist
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System

Like all Toyota vehicles on sale in the U.S., the Mirai comes standard with Toyota Safety Sense. It includes advanced safety and driver assistance systems such as a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, lane departure alert with steering assist, lane keeping assist, radar-guided cruise control, and automatic high beams.

Why Toyota Is Hellbent On Keeping The Hydrogen-powered Mirai Alive Despite Its Poor Sales

In eight years, the Mirai only sold 14,000 examples. However, Toyota is keeping it alive, and pushing for more hydrogen vehicles, here’s why.

The Toyota Mirai Starts At $50,190

2022 Toyota Mirai

For the 2024 model year, Toyota has dropped the LE trim from the Mirai’s lineup. The range now starts with the XLE trim, which starts at $50,190. However, if you do not mind the reduced range and would instead go for the fully loaded Mirai Limited, you must pay $67,115.

2024 Toyota Mirai Prices



2024 Mirai XLE


2024 Mirai Limited


(Prices Sourced From Toyota)

The Toyota Mirai is the most affordable Hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicle in the U.S., but it is not the only one. Hyundai also sells an FCEV in the United States – the Nexo. It is only available in a front-wheel-drive configuration, and its electric motor produces 161 horsepower. The 2024 Hyundai Nexo Prices start at $60,135 for the entry-level Blue trim and go up to $63,585 for the top-spec Limited.

2024 Hyundai Nexo Prices



2024 Nexo Blue


2024 Nexo Limited


(Prices Sourced From Hyundai)

Here’s How Toyota’s Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Technology Works

The Toyota Mirai’s Hydrogen-Electric propulsion system consists of multiple components. The system comprises three pressurized hydrogen tanks, an air intake system, a fuel-cell unit, a power control unit, an electric motor, and a lithium-ion battery.

The Toyota Mirai Is A Lab On Wheels

The Mirai fuel cell unit consists of 330 individual fuel cells. These are made from thin sets of catalyst plates (anode and cathode) with a Polymer Electrolyte Membrane sandwiched in between. The oxygen and hydrogen that flow into the fuel cell unit combine in these fuel cells in an electrochemical reaction to produce electricity.

The electricity generated in the fuel cell is sent to the electric motor, which drives the Mirai’s rear wheels through a single-speed automatic gearbox. Water is the only by-product of the electrochemical reaction between oxygen and hydrogen in the Mirai’s fuel cell unit.

No Need For A Large Battery Pack

Since an FCEV uses hydrogen and oxygen to generate electricity, it does not need a large battery pack to store charge. The Mirai comes with a 1.24 kWh battery mounted at the back. It is used as a reserve to store surplus charge and hold the electricity generated by the Mirai’s brake energy recuperation system.

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