2003 Toyota Fine-N Concept
The Fine-N (Fuel cell INnovative Emotion-Next generation) shows how latest generation fuel cell technology opens up a new world of design possibilities. The hydrogen fuel stack is just 150mm tall and is housed in the floor of the car, along with the lithium ion battery. The smaller dimensions of the fuel cell have been achieved partly by storing the compressed hydrogen under greater pressure (70mpa or about 700 atmospheres).
Instead of a conventional drivetrain, the Fine-N uses by-wire steering, braking and throttle controls. With no mechanical constraints, the steering wheel and pedals can be positioned to suit the preferences of any driver and the interior has been opened up completely for the occupants. In fact the Fine-N has cabin space greater than that of a Camry, contained within a body that is about the size of a Corolla. The exterior is characterised by the wheel-at-each corner design with short overhangs and a panoramic front screen. Pronounced front and rear wings add character to the dynamic design.
Each wheel is equipped with its own 25kW motor, providing exceptional performance through four-wheel control for acceleration and braking. Thanks to the efficiency of the new fuel cell, the driving range is up to 500km (312.5 miles).
The Fine-N is protected by a face recognition system that authenticates the driver before unlocking automatically. Fastening the seatbelt then triggers the drivers personal memory settings for steering wheel and pedal positions and ventilation, air conditioning, navigation and audio settings.
Story by Toyota Motor Corp