Fueled By Lemonade, Toyota Mirai Now Up To 1,100 Ownership Requests – Video

AUG 24 2015 BY JAY COLE 60

The First Mirais To Arrive In Europe Are Unlikely To Be Powered By Lemonade...But You Never Know

The First 5 Toyota Mirais To Arrive In Europe Are Unlikely To Be Powered By Lemonade…But Then Again, You Never Know

The last time we checked, the 2016 Toyota Mirai had 600 “requests” for ownership during its first full 10 days of availability – a result which didn’t impress us too much considering how the other big name “green” vehicles had done during their launches.

For reference: The Nissan LEAF netted 2,700 $99 deposits in the first three hours, while the Chevrolet Volt had a private list of more than 50,000 interested in the extended range EV – even before the company made the car available.

Are You One Of The 1,100 Hand Raisers?

Are You One Of The 1,100 Hand Raisers?

Now after the first 40 days of availability, Edmunds has an update on the demand for the fuel cell Mirai – 1,100 total requests.  We will just go ahead and let readers judge the success of the program based on those numbers for themselves without commentary.

But on a positive spin sidenote, Toyota says the car can be “Powered By Lemonade” in a spot released Friday.

“What if I told you, I can take all your lemonade, turn it into hydrogen, and then turn that hydrogen into fuel, that can power a car?” – Toyota actor

…I would tell you that is wildly inefficient.

Edmunds, Hat tip to sven!

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60 Comments on "Fueled By Lemonade, Toyota Mirai Now Up To 1,100 Ownership Requests – Video"

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Big Solar

when life gives you lemons


Toyota comes and takes them away…

Mark C

Please include the lemonade to hydrogen converter with the car so I can convert it at home on renewable energy myself. Otherwise, I’m not interested.


It’s alright for you people living in climates where you can have lemon trees in your yard, but what are we going to do up here, run it on snow?


Build a large greenhouse for your lemon trees. Use natural gas to heat it. Why not? The well-to-wheel production of hydrogen fuel is already so inefficient that wasting even more more fossil fuel to produce fuel for this car will hardly make much of a difference…

Someone out there

It’s suitable that they compare their car to lemons because that is what it is.




Pee works just as good. So I’d say: enjoy the lemonade!


Just as bad, you mean. Last time this came up, a bit of arithmetic shows just how much urine- or rather,how little driving- this implies.


Using a pickup truck full of cattle manure, as shown in Toyota’s “Fueled by Bullsh!t” commercial, doesn’t imply much driving either. Especially if you factor in the fact that Toyota shipped the manure from the West coast to the East coast for methane reforming, then shipped the hydrogen produced down to Georgia for filming the commercial.

In other words, Toyota used much, much more energy than was in that pickup full of manure to ship it cross country one-and-a-half times. That’s a net negative energy production!

Surely the chemical energy content of urine isn’t a negative number.

David Murray

I noticed they had to include the fine print at the bottom of the video “do not use raw lemonade as fuel” I guess that shows the mentality of the potential customers for this car.

Of course the whole thing is stupid because lemonade is not a fuel source. Whatever energy they use to turn that lemonade into hydrogen is the true fuel source.

However.. I wish GM would at least make an effort to market the Volt like this. That’s at least one thing Toyota is doing.


Toyota is also marketing the Mirai at races, first in a NASCAR race as the pace car, and now at a World Rally Championship race as the zero car, which precedes competitors through each stage of the race. I don’t recall GM showcasing the Volt at a race as either a pace car or zero car, but I could be wrong.

“The Mirai’s Chief Engineer, Yoshikazu Tanaka, commented on the car’s racing debut: ‘It is our dream that one day our fuel cell vehicles will be able to compete in WRC. Therefore, we will continue to develop this technology with great ambition.'”



Mark Hovis

I can see a future for utility scale hydrogen storage reformed from renewable energy to help with intermittency.

Not so much to power my vehicle.

The problem with the hydrogen storage is that the companies backing this are mostly oil companies, and have very little intention of reforming from renewables other than a “bait-n-switch” to hydrogen reformed from fracked gas.

So my most memorable line from the lemonade piece, “I feel swindled”


Toyota also made a companion video that addressed utility scale hydrogen storage: “The Science Behind Fueled by Lemonade.”


I can’t see a future where anyone’s dumb enough to fall for hydrogen’s roundtrip efficiency… or inefficiency, that is. Horrendous losses on electrolysis, chained to equally bad fuel cell losses.

Jérémie Olivier

So much misinformation …. Bohooooo!


2,700 people actually paid a $99 reservation fee for the Mirai?

Okay, give the Devil his due: That’s a lot more people than I expected to actually show any “earnest money” for this fool cell car.

But still, I expect the Mirai to show sharply declining sales after the first year, not growing sales.


Edit: Ack! I didn’t read that carefully enough. It was the Leaf which got 2,700 people to pay a $99 reservation fee, not the Mirai.

My universe has righted itself, thank goodness.


“What if I told you, I can take all your lemonade, turn it into hydrogen, and then turn that hydrogen into fuel, that can power a car?” – Toyota actor

Then I would respond “That’s not merely B.S., it’s…



David Murray

Or to quote Cubert Farnsworth, “That’s weapons-grade bolognium!”


I would prefer to see Toyota Execs MAKE Lemonade from the acidic exhaust water that drips out of the tailpipe. They’ve already publicly refused to drink what comes out of it. Maybe if it was Koolade– they’d be more into doing it. They seem to drink a lot of it. 😉


Corn Stover. Not as easy to drink, but it will produce hydrogen from essentially a waste product.


Corn stover hydrogen breakthrough article.



Nope again. Biomass can be pyrolyzed to natural gas or methanol, and with greater process yield. Those organics can then be sold through stock infrastructure- methanol pumps were installed in the ’90s as they are visibly identical to gas pumps, and LNG pumps are already on some interstates. Those fuels can then be used in natural gas or methanol fuel cells.

Distribution of organics is far more efficient than hydrogen, and increasingly so as the logistics chain proceeds. But you know what’s more efficient? Using hydrogen to… hydrolyze biomass! If we actually had hydrogen, we would never do anything as stupid as selling it retail. Hydrogen is a fuel… for practical fuels.


I didn’t think it was possible to exceed “cringeworthy” with these vacuous Mirai ads, but “nauseating” does actually best Toyota’s previous entry.

Only line in the entire video that actually addresses the state of the hydrogen supply and distribution chain:

“I think you’re trying to swindle me”

Rick Danger

Hoo boy.

I hope Toyota chokes to death on their own Frackogen.


Nah, hydrogen is useful as a diving gas. Appropriate, since any such fools will end up underwater on their capital.

Eric Richner

Would be great to play a joke on Toyota and have all EV sympathizers sign up or a non committal reservation for the Mirai – this would only benefit future owners because they will joyfully oversupply the market.


No, because they’ll discount them to dump them, and clueless people will buy them. 🙁


So she paid $10.57 cents for the lemonade. That’s probably not too far off from what it would cost for a gallon equivalent of hydrogen.


“Between $10-$15 per kg” according to California Fuel Cell partnership”.

“$13.68 per kg” in Sacramento according to Scientific American.

Tony Williams

It’s $13.99 per kg in Diamond Bar, California (at the Air Quality Management District office).

“H70” which I presume to mean Hydrogen 700 atmosphere pressure (10,000psi).

One kg is the gasoline gallon equivalent, but mercifully, hydrogen is double the efficiency of gasoline, so a 25mpg gas car can go 50 miles on one kg of “H70”.

The 33.5kWh of electric power equivalent of a gallon of gasoline will propel a typical EV at 3 miles per kWh for about 100 miles. No natural gas required.

Independent Observer

Toyota is a respected company with many green accomplishments. If this were EEStor/Zenn it would be another story. It is better to root for success, than to relish failure. After all Toyota produces and supports many well paying jobs in the U.S.

Rick Danger

The physics of hydrogen don’t change, whether it’s Toyota trying it or Elmer Fudd.


Or in this case, the Mad Hatter…


Except we would have MORE accomplishments and jobs wihout the hydrogen vape-and-switch.



Your lemonade must have a lot of sugar.


Converting lemonade to hydrogen is a good example of how inefficient it is rather than just using the electricity directly. For example why not just turn the lemon into a battery to power a car?


Looks like while I was composing my lemon battery post, you beat me to it. Great Volt minds think alike, I guess:)


If I recall my elementary school science, can not one also create a BATTERY with a lemon and two electrodes? No making lemonade, no converting lemonade to hydrogen, no high pressure H2 tank, no fuel cell. Just plug in the lemon and run your electrical device.

Now picture the same ad, except a guy driving a BEV pulls up to the stand, takes one of their lemons, plugs in the electrodes to the lemon, and hooks it up to an LED and voila – LIGHT!
The kids just look in awe and say…”Cool!”. He gives them a bunch of LEDs, wire and galvanized nails and next thing you know, the kids have transformed their business and are selling lemon-lights bay the bushel!

Jeff Songster

I wish I could get a thousand people to offer me money for nothing of value… oh wait that’s what hedge fund guys do… so I guess this is just the scam of capitalism. Don’t fall for it. Drive Electric. Let the dinos stay dead.


“I feel like you’re swindling me”? Yes we are.


I have to say, I don’t feel the need for advertising to educate the public on the flaws in Toyota’s logic. These ads are doing a pretty bang up job of shooting themselves in the foot.

MTN Ranger

Unintentionial laugh: “DO NOT USE RAW LEMONADE AS FUEL.”


That’s need because, you know, some fool might compress lemonade to 10,000 PSI and stick it in the tank. Toyota does not want to get stuck with that warranty repair. Fool’s on his own for that science experiment.

Mister G



Why does Toyota take us for granted with fool cell ads like this. -_-

Rick Danger

Because they want us to quit buying their products and they want us to tell all of our friends not to buy a Toyota too.


Well they’ve definitely succeeded with me!


This is a really, really stupid video. There isn’t an actual overproduction of lemonade that is going to waste. And the only other sources of energy they talk about is wind and sun. But lemonade is not the same as wind and sun. You still need an energy source to change the lemonade into H2.
On top of that, they fail to mention the biggest source of H2. Maybe because they know it’s not green?

In any case, the whole thing is too scripted and badly acted.


Let’s not forget the subtext here:

Cute kids = greedy oil billionaires

Pampered suburban mom = innocent consumer being swindled by greedy kids…er…oil billionaires.


“I can’t find a good old fashioned gas station around here anymore, with all these Hydrogen filling stations popping up” said no one ever.

no comment

toyota seems to be committed to this design language. i personally don’t care for it. i saw elements of the mirai design in the new prius, especially at the tail end of the car.


Yes, I saw the concept for the Prius and thought “no way Toyota is stupid enough to make the Prius THAT ugly!” And then the Mirai came out. ‘Nuff said.


Maybe I missed someone but has anyone noticed that all of the fuel cell fan boi’s seem to be missing?

Three Electrics

Comparing production car numbers to a project that exists *only* to catalyze the build out of hydrogen fueling stations and is sold in only eight dealerships? Stay classy, editors.


1000 . . . wow.

This is the killer for fuel cell cars . . . people just don’t want them. Go ahead and point out the shortcomings of EVs but at least people want them to a decent degree.

EVs avoided the chicken & egg fueling infrastructure issue by being able to be recharged at home with a cheap EVSE.

mike w

So anybody know how many gallons of lemonade it take to go 1 mile in a Mira?


Fuel cell cars are no more “powered” by water than steam cars were one hundred years ago (steam cars burned kerosene to boil the water into high-pressure steam).

In fact, a 1910 Stanley Steamer could also “run” on lemonade just as well as this stupid contraption.


“What if I told you that your drinking water has been poisoned by fracking natural gas to make hydrogen so that I can drive you to the hospital in an ugly car?”