Driving a hydrogen car: Is this really the future?

Every time I shoot a video in an electric car, someone in the comments pops up to say "yeah but the real future is hydrogen cars." For years I've wanted to test that claim for myself ... but the thing is, to drive a hydrogen car you need to live near hydrogen fueling stations – and the closest one to my Boston home is 2,547 miles away.

So when I was in San Francisco last week Instagramming the news from Qualcomm and Audi, I called up the good people at Toyota and asked them to put me behind the wheel of their Mirai sedan. "Mirai" is the Japanese word for "future," and if you're a believer in the long-term appeal of hydrogen, this car lives up to its name. It combines oxygen from the atmosphere and hydrogen from dual 10,000 psi tanks under the cabin to produce electricity that spins an electric motor – and unlike its battery-electric competition, the Mirai takes no longer to refuel than your typical gas guzzler.

But as I hurtled down the highway leaving nothing behind me but a thin stream of water, en route to one of only a handful of refueling stations in the entire country, I started wondering just how tenable the Mirai's approach to mobility is. The answer will be different for everyone depending on how much you value green energy, how you source your hydrogen, how long Toyota maintains its offer of three years of free fuel ... and most of all, where you make your home. Join me for a quick spin around the California coast in MrMobile's first hydrogen car test drive – click the video above!

Stay social, my friends