The upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games will be a global showcase for the latest hydrogen fuel-cell cars with Toyotas Mirai set to star.
Japan is planning to use the games as a chance to expand its hydrogen infrastructure and put more fuel-cell vehicles on its roads.
As the world’s biggest sporting event, huge media focus will be on the carmaker who decides to step in as the Games’ exclusive vehicle partner.
Toyota was the first Japanese manufacturer to put a fuel-cell car on sale to the general public and has recently embarked on the first phases of a slick Olympic sponsorship campaign. Toyota was officially signed as a global sponsor of the 2020 Games earlier this month.
Sponsorship of the Olympic Games takes effect straight away; the company has been granted sponsorship rights in Japan through 2016, and begins globally in 2017.
The deal will run until 2024, giving Toyota coverage of the 2020 Tokyo Games, as well as the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and the 2022 and 2024 winter and summer games, respectively.
As the exclusive automotive sponsor of these games, Toyota will be able to use the Olympic rings in advertising.
Although the sponsorship deal covers the entire range of Toyota cars – much of the focus for the Tokyo Games will be focused on the state-of-the-art Mirai.
The Tokyo city government plans to spend around £260 million on fuel-cell vehicle subsidies and installation of at least 35 hydrogen fuelling stations between now and 2020.
When the games get underway, its likely Mirai saloons will be used as official vehicles to shuttle dignitaries and athletes around.