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What is it

Toyota Mirai: The radically futuristic-looking Mirai fuel cell is Toyota's ambitious attempt to once again leapfrog itself into an environmentally-friendly leadership position, with a zero-emissions electric car that addresses current battery EV limitations, but with its own unique issues.

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Those massive triangular air intakes upfront may seem ready to hoover up small dogs, but Toyota has a proven track record of pairing polarizing styling with advanced green technology (Prius anyone?).

What else is new

Unlike those clean but range-limited BEVs, the Mirai can be refueled in five minutes at a familiar pump, and can travel up to 480km, says Toyota.

Under the hood

It doesn't get much greener than generating your own electricity onboard using the compressed hydrogen-fed fuel cell "engine" instead of plugging into the grid for its electrons, especially if that grid is fed by coal. Plus it feels peppier than a Prius, and much quieter overall.

When can we buy it, and for how much

Not for at least two years, and maybe longer. Will run US$57,500 when launched in California late next year, or US$499/month if leased. Toyota won't offer it in Canada until there's an "active network" of public hydrogen stations – and there are none now.

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Cool quotient: 2/5 (Depends greatly on how much you like its looks, and the planet.)

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