Toyota Motor Corp. has put its Mirai fuel-cell vehicle on sale.
The automaker does not plan to sell the car at showrooms or hold a launch event, as the current annual production capacity stands at 700 units and it takes up to two years to deliver new vehicles to buyers.
The number of preorders stands at about 1,000 units, already surpassing Toyota’s yearly sales target of 400 units.
Toyota will work on preparations for a production increase, aiming to sell the car overseas from summer next year.
The automaker produces key parts of the Mirai, including the fuel-cell that generates electricity through a chemical reaction between hydrogen and oxygen, and also assembles the vehicle, at two plants in Aichi Prefecture. The cars are manually assembled.
By increasing its assembly lines, Toyota is expected to triple its current production capability by the end of 2015.
The four-seater Mirai sedan is priced at ¥7,236,000, but government subsidies will reduce the purchase price to about ¥5.2 million.
The fuel-cell vehicle has been ordered mainly by public offices and companies.
Toyota expects that sales to general consumers will expand around 2016, when hydrogen fueling stations are likely to be more widespread.