The launch of the vehicle has come earlier than planned, the manufacturer said.
'The moved-up launch reflects the successful outcome of a full year of Japan/US public-road testing of the FCHV-4 – a fuel cell hybrid vehicle (FCHV) prototype – and Toyota Motor Corporation's (TMC) response to society's expectations for cleaner mobility solutions,' the manufacturer said.
Toyota said the model will be a newly developed fuel cell hybrid vehicle featuring, said the carmaker, 'conventional-vehicle-like performance based on improvement's to the FCHV-4's reliability, cruising distance, functionality and other aspects'.
The company will lease the vehicle to entities such as government bodies, research institutions and energy-related companies as issues that remain such as lowering costs and performance at freezing-and-below temperatures make it impractical for public use.
The manufacturer expects to lease about 20 units over the course of a year in limited areas in which TMC has confirmed the availability of hydrogen supply and after-sales service.
Toyota said: 'TMC believes test marketing an FCHV will contribute much toward establishing standards and infrastructures for the popularisation of fuel cell vehicles and towards greater social acceptance as hydrogen as a fuel.
'TMC expects full-scale commercialisation of fuel cell vehicles to begin in 2010 at the earliest, once such standards and infrastructures, as well as a social foundation for deepening the public's understanding of hydrogen fuel, are in place.'