These Automakers Are Reaching Into the Future

As governments tighten down on automakers, demanding more environmentally-friendly vehicles, the manufacturers are left weighing their options. Shifts in Japan seem to hint at the future technology of cars, but will it be hybrids, wholly electric vehicles, or the more exotic hydrogen-powered vehicles?

It’s been more than 10 years since Toyota (NYSE:TM) introduced its hybrid Prius. Since then the automaker has developed more than 10 different hybrid models and sold nearly 5 million — 1.2 million in just the past year.

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In comparison, Nissan (NSANY.PK) has taken a much longer time to get its fully electric vehicles, or EVs, adopted by consumers. The Leaf is probably Nissan’s most well known EV, and since its launch in 2010, it has sold under 50,000 vehicles worldwide. The weaknesses of EVs is apparent in their driving range and production cost, and considering the shortcomings, Nissan is reconsidering its stance on making hybrid vehicles like Toyota.

However, one thing both companies are looking into is fuel cell technology, which would run on hydrogen and only have emissions of water. Neither company is alone in their search for the holy grail of green car fuels…