Technology developed by Nissan for the battery-electric Nissan LEAF will be used in an electric bus project led by a team from Kumamoto University, that starts testing next month in Japan, with the goal of making zero-emission public transit more widespread and affordable. The bus, named “Yoka ECO Bus,” will... Read more →


11 Japanese auto, infrastructure and financial companies establishing new company to develop hydrogen stations

As a result of discussions that began in May 2017, eleven companies in Japan have signed an agreement to form a new company in the spring of 2018 aimed at the full-fledged development of hydrogen recharging stations (HRS) for fuel cell vehicles (FCV). The initial partners include Toyota Motor Corporation;... Read more →


Nissan to launch car-sharing service in Japan with new LEAF, Note e-POWER

As part of Nissan Intelligent Mobility, Nissan will introduce a car-sharing service in Japan enabling users to experience the company’s advanced technologies in vehicle electrification and intelligence. The service, named e-share mobi, will begin 15 Jan 2018, and will initially feature the new, all-electric Nissan LEAF and the Nissan Note... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation and the MS&AD Insurance Group’s Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance Co., Ltd. have jointly developed Japan’s first driving behavior-based telematics automobile insurance. The plan is available to owners of certain units of Toyota connected cars, and uses driving data gathered via telematics technologies to adjust insurance premiums based... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation has introduced a new taxi vehicle for Japan, the “JPN Taxi.” Equipped with a newly developed liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) hybrid system, the new model offers 19.4 km/L (45.6 mpg US, 5.51 l/100 km) fuel economy and sharply reduced CO2 emissions. Toyota made enhancements to safety equipment,... Read more →


Toyota Mobility Foundation launches research program to support innovative hydrogen energy solutions

The Toyota Mobility Foundation (TMF) has launched a research program to spur the development of a “hydrogen society”—envisioned as a set of communities with integrated, green-energy networks powered by mini-hydrogen plants that aim to create a carbon-free, hydrogen distribution system. TMF has begun soliciting research proposals under this new program.... Read more →


Four Japanese companies—Chiyoda, Mitsubishi, Mitsui and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha—have launched the “Advanced Hydrogen Energy Chain Association for Technology Development”(AHEAD) along with the world’s first Global Hydrogen Supply Chain Demonstration Project. The project, a subsidized “Technology Development Project to establish Hydrogen Society/Technology Development for the Utilization of Large Scale Hydrogen... Read more →


Japan Post and Honda to collaborate on using electric motorcycles for postal deliveries

Japan Post Co., Ltd. and Honda Motor Co. began discussions and signed a memorandum of understanding concerning the development and use of electric motorcycles for postal deliveries; these will serve as an alternative to the current gasoline-powered delivery motorcycles. During the past approximately half century, Japan Post and Honda have... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation delivered the first fuel cell bus (FC bus) sold under the Toyota brand to the Bureau of Transportation of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. This FC bus will be put into operation as a Toei route bus in March along with a second bus that is scheduled for... Read more →


Australia and Japan developing safety standards for marine transport of liquid hydrogen; KHI building carrier

Australia and Japan recently signed a memorandum at the headquarters of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) which will allow liquid hydrogen (LH2) to be shipped in bulk for the first time. Ship containment systems are being developed in Japan that will be capable of safely transporting liquid hydrogen in... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation will partner with five Japanese power companies—Tohoku Electric Power Co., Ltd.; TEPCO Energy Partner, Inc.; Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc.; Kansai Electric Power Co., Inc.; and Shikoku Electric Power Company, Inc. to offer the new PHV Connected Power Service. This service will provide customers of the new... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation will begin to sell fuel cell buses (FC buses) under the Toyota brand from early 2017. After repeated field tests of the hydrogen-powered buses for practical use, the Bureau of Transportation of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government plans to utilize two of the Toyota FC Buses as fixed-route... Read more →


Suzuki reports fuel economy testing irregularities in Japan but says no need to amend values

Suzuki announcement that it has found “some discrepancies” between the automobile emission and fuel efficiency testing methodology it has used in Japan and the requirements from Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT). However, the company said, after retesting vehicles, it found that all certified fuel efficiency values... Read more →


Mitsubishi Motors manipulated fuel economy testing on 625K mini-cars sold in Japan; other models affected

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) has admitted to manipulating fuel consumption testing data for some 625,000 mini-cars it manufactured for sale in Japan by itself and partner Nissan. Nissan was the one who identified the discrepancies. In a statement, MMC said that with respect to the fuel consumption testing data submitted... Read more →


Japan updates hydrogen fuel cell targets; 320 stations by 2025, 800,000 vehicles by 2030

Japan’s Council for a Strategy for Hydrogen and Fuel Cells, which includes experts from industry, academia, and government, recently issued a revised version of the Strategic Roadmap for Hydrogen and Fuel Cells. Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) established the Council in December 2013; the Strategic Road Map... Read more →


A Japanese partnership comprising the Kanagawa Prefectural Government; the municipal governments of the cities of Yokohama and Kawasaki; Toyota; Toshiba; and Iwatani announced the forthcoming start of a four-year project to implement and evaluate an end-to-end low-carbon hydrogen supply chain which will use hydrogen produced from renewable energy to power... Read more →


On 10 March, Honda Motor Co. began sales in Japan of its all-new fuel cell vehicle (FCV), the Clarity Fuel Cell. (Earlier post.) Honda is targeting sales of approximately 200 units in the first year, with a focus on lease sales mainly to local government bodies or businesses Honda has... Read more →


Tottori Prefecture, Tottori Gas Co., Ltd, Sekisui House Ltd. and Honda Motor Co., Ltd. signed an agreement to pursue jointly Tottori Prefecture’s project to establish a base for a hydrogen energy demonstration (and environmental education). This will be Japan’s first case where hydrogen energy will be utilized through the integration... Read more →


Bosch has begun on-road testing of autonomous driving in Japan, its third location for the development work after Germany and the US. Bosch’s initial goal is the development of the highway pilot, which will allow cars to drive autonomously on freeways and freeway-like roads starting in 2020. Worldwide, nearly 2,500... Read more →


euglena planning commercial production of biojet and renewable diesel from algae in Japan

Japan-based euglena Co. plans to produce and supply biojet and renewable diesel in Japan at commercial scale in the 2020s with support from the City of Yokohama, Chiyoda Corporation, Itochu Enex Co., Isuzu Motors and All Nippon Airways (ANA). The company will build Japan’s first demonstration plant for the production... Read more →


Mazda Motor Corporation’s new paint system—the Aqua-tech Paint System—has received the Prime Minister’s Award (Manufacturing and Production Process Category) at the 6th Monodzukuri Nippon Grand Award ceremony. The Aqua-tech Paint System reduces emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) compared to Mazda’s previous oil-based paint systems without increasing energy consumption (and... Read more →


Major corporate and public sector partners in Japan are launching an effort to test a full carbon-neutral hydrogen supply chain powered by renewable wind energy. The trials are planned to take place near the cities of Yokohama and Kawasaki in the Keihin coastal region. On the public sector side, the... Read more →


Fukushima and the Fukushima Renewable Energy Institute (FREA) have launched a power-to-has project with a view to making the prefecture a hydrogen supply center by as early as 2016, according to a report in The Japan Times, via Fukushima Minpo. The project will test and refine a model of hydrogen-supply... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., and Honda Motor Co., Ltd. have agreed on key details of their joint support project for the development of hydrogen station infrastructure in Japan. (Earlier post.) The joint project (conducted alongside the Japanese government’s support for hydrogen stations) will cover one-third of the... Read more →


Intelligent Energy will showcase its evaporatively-cooled 100kW automotive fuel cell architecture (earlier post) at the JSAE Automotive Engineering Exposition in Japan, 20-22 May. The company’s unique stack technology offers leading power densities of 3.5 kW/l (volumetric) and 3.0 kW/kg (gravimetric), while being engineered for low-cost, high-volume series production. Intelligent Energy’s... Read more →


In a policy update, the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) reports that Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) and Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) have finalized new proposed fuel economy standards for light- and medium-duty commercial vehicles with gross vehicle weights less than 3.5... Read more →


In conjunction with the start of sales of Toyota’s Mirai fuel cell vehicle in Japan (earlier post), Fujitsu launched a hydrogen station data management service, the first in Japan, enabling people to access real-time information on the location and hours of operation of hydrogen stations, both stationary and mobile. The... Read more →


Toshiba Corporation and Kawasaki City will conduct a cooperative demonstration experiment of an independent energy supply system utilizing solar power and hydrogen. This system will be set up in the Kawasaki Marien public facility and Higashi-Ogishima-Naka Park in the Kawasaki Port area. The demonstration will run from April 2015 (the... Read more →


The Nikkei reports that Toyota will begin sales of its new hydrogen fuel cell vehicle (FCV), reportedly named Mirai, in Japan in December. The company had earlier said the fuel cell sedan would be on sale in Japan before April 2015, and in the US and Europe by summer 2015.... Read more →


Nissan Motor Co., Ltd and the City of Yokohama will extend the one-year trial run of the first large-scale One-way Car Sharing Service in Japan, called “Choimobi Yokohama,” for another year. (Earlier post.) The service, which kicked off on 11 October 2013, features Nissan’s ultra-compact New Mobility Concept electric vehicles.... Read more →


Toyota’s Mitsuhisa Kato briefs the media in Japan on the timing and pricing of the FCV, and outlines the company’s view of the role of fuel cell vehicles. Click to enlarge. Toyota Motor Corporation revealed the exterior design and Japan pricing of its hydrogen fuel cell sedan, first unveiled as... Read more →


Toyota Motor Corporation, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Honda Motor Co., Ltd., and Mitsubishi Motors Corporation have jointly established a new company, Nippon Charge Service, LLC, to promote the installation of chargers for plug-in electric vehicles (PHVs, PHEVs, EVs). The goal is to help build a charging network that offers more... Read more →


Eight Japanese automakers and one automobile research institute—Suzuki Motor; Daihatsu Motor; Toyota Motor; Nissan Motor; Fuji Heavy Industries; Honda R&D; Mazda Moto; Mitsubishi Motors; and Japan Automobile Research Institute (JARI)—have jointly established the Research Association of Automotive Internal Combustion Engines (AICE). AICE’s president is Keiji Otsu, Managing Officer, Honda R&D.... Read more →


Image of how the driving support system utilizes traffic signal information. Click to enlarge. Honda Motor Co., Ltd. plans to begin public road demonstration testing of its driving support system utilizing traffic signal information next month. The demonstration testing will be conducted in Utsunomiya City, Tochigi Prefecture in Japan in... Read more →


Honda Motor Co., Ltd. announced a voluntary recall of the all-new Fit Hybrid (earlier post) and Vezel Hybrid (earlier post) produced in Japan from July 2013 through February 2014 due to a problem with the software program controlling the 7-speed dual clutch transmission (DCT) which could cause non-engagement of gears,... Read more →


JAMA cites the poor oxidation stability of high-level biodiesel blends, highlighted in the JATOP findings, in sticking with B5 levels. PME= palm oil methyl ester, RME = rapeseed methyl ester, SME = soy methyl ester, WME = waste cooking oil methyl ester, FTD = Fischer-Tropsch diesel, HBD = hydrogenated biodiesel.... Read more →


Noah G (hybrid model with options). Click to enlarge. In Japan, Toyota Motor Corporation launched the completely redesigned Voxy minivan through Netz dealers, and the completely redesigned Noah minivan through Toyota Corolla dealers; hybrid models are scheduled for release on 14 February. Monthly sales targets for Japan are 4,600 units... Read more →


VEZEL HYBRID. Click to enlarge. Honda Motor Co., Ltd. began sales of the VEZEL in Japan today. Honda says that the VEZEL fuses the dynamic qualities of an SUV, the elegance of a coupe, the functionality of a minivan and excellent fuel economy. The conventional VEZEL is equipped with a... Read more →


At the Tokyo Motor Show, Mazda is showcasing the recently-released Mazda Axela (known as Mazda3 overseas) with a variety of engine types at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show, including a CNG concept and hybrid variants. (Earlier post.) The Axela accounts for more than 30% of global sales; the latest Axela... Read more →


Mazda suspends dealership test drives showcasing Smart City Brake Support after injury accident

Mazda is suspending all test drives intended to showcase the accident avoidance features of Smart City Brake Support until the cause of an accident with injuries in Japan involving the technology has been established and countermeasures taken. On 10 November, there was an accident causing injury to a customer and... Read more →


Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Mitsubishi to provide financial assistance for EV charging infrastructure in Japan

Toyota Motor Corporation, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Honda Motor Co., Ltd., and Mitsubishi Motors Corporation have agreed on the details of specific financial assistance they will provide to installers of charging stations for electric vehicles (PHVs, PHEVs, and EVs). This announcement follows an agreement the four companies announced in July... Read more →


Axela Hybrid. Click to enlarge. Mazda Motor Corporation will begin taking pre-orders for the new Mazda Axela sports compact (known outside of Japan as Mazda3) on 10 October 10, 2013 at its dealers throughout Japan. (Earlier post.) The company expects to sell 3,000 units per month in Japan. Sales will... Read more →


Toyota launches Corolla hybrid models in Japan

Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) launched hybrid versions of the Corolla Axio sedan and Corolla Fielder station wagon in Japan. In addition, there will be a special Corolla Fielder Hybrid G Aerotourer·WxB grade. Monthly sales target for Japan are 1,000 units of the Corolla Axio hybrid and 1,500 units of the... Read more →


Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Mitsubishi agree to joint development of charging infrastructure for plug-in vehicles in Japan

Toyota Motor Corporation, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Honda Motor Co., Ltd., and Mitsubishi Motors Corporation jointly announced their agreement to work together to promote the installation of chargers for plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs)—(plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) and battery-electric vehicles (EVs)—and to build a charging network service that offers more convenience to... Read more →


The working concept of I3–/I– redox reaction in the aqueous Li-I2 battery. Zhao et al. Click to enlarge. A team from Japan’s RIKEN, led by Hye Ryung Byon, has developed a lithium-iodine (Li-I2) battery system with a significantly higher energy density than conventional lithium-ion batteries. RIKEN is Japan’s largest research... Read more →


Ha:mo Ride EV-sharing station. Click to enlarge. Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC), in cooperation with the Toyota City municipal government, transportation companies and others, began testing of an optimized urban transportation system called “Ha:mo” (“harmonious mobility”). The system will select optimal means of transport for users based on the operational status... Read more →


FC Bus Power Supply System and the V2H System. Click to enlarge. Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) has developed an external power supply system that uses electricity generated within a fuel cell bus (FC bus) to supply electrical power to devices such as home electrical appliances. An FC bus—based on the... Read more →


Demio EV. Click to enlarge. Mazda Motor Corporation will begin leasing the Demio EV in October 2012. The Demio EV is an independently developed electric vehicle based on the Mazda Demio (known outside of Japan as Mazda2). Mazda intends to lease approximately 100 units in total, mainly to local governments... Read more →


Nissan Cima. Click to enlarge. Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. has launched the fifth-generation of its luxury sedan the Nissan Cima, equipped with Nissan’s one-motor two-clutch parallel hybrid system. (Earlier post.) The Cima also features, among its other technologies, the first application of sound-absorbing tires on a Nissan vehicle. The Cima... Read more →


The CX-5. Click to enlarge. Mazda Motor Corporation has begun production of the all-new Mazda CX-5 with its new-generation SKYACTIV-D 2.2-liter diesel engine (earlier post) at its Ujina Plant near Mazda’s headquarters in Hiroshima. The CX-5 will be the first model of the company’s new-generation products that adopts SKYACTIV Technology... Read more →