1. Toyota's hydrogen-powered car - "Mirai" appearing on stage
2. SOUNDBITE (Japanese) Yoshikazu Tanaka, Toyota Motor Deputy Chief Engineer:
"It is a car of the next century, a car that leads to making a society use hydrogen energy. To realise this concept, we have put in all our advanced technology into the development. As a result, we believe we developed a car that is not only good for the environment, but it is also a vehicle that is fun, quiet, pleasurable and comfortable to drive."
3. Various of Toyota Mirai driving along streets
4. Toyota Motor Executive Vice President Mitsuhisa Kato on stage
5. SOUNDBITE (Japanese) Mitsuhisa Kato, Toyota Motor Executive Vice President:
"The FCV (fuel cell vehicle) - if hydrogen energy is once accepted, it will make a great difference in the society. I believe its innovation will surpass the Prius."
6. Logo on car reading (English): "Fuel Cell"
7. Various set up shots of Hans Greimel, auto analyst at Toyota's press conference venue
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Hans Greimel, Asia Editor of Automotive News:
"Well, they often say that the hydrogen fuel cell car is is kind of like the car of the future. But now we finally see the future gradually creeping closer. There hasn't been a lot of effort yet to really make a marketable retail-ready fuel cell car. But here we see Toyota taking a step in that direction where putting of a retail price on a car, which is something that's a little bit new. We're also putting volumes on a car, sales volumes on a car, that's also kind of a new direction. So we're seeing that the fuel cell, hydrogen-powered cars are becoming more of a... creeping closer to reality."
There will only be a few hundred, and they won't be cheap, but Toyota is about to take its first small step into the unproven market for emissions-free, hydrogen-powered vehicles.
The world's largest automaker announced Tuesday that it will begin selling fuel cell cars in Japan on December 15, and in the US and Europe in mid-2015.
The sporty-looking, four-door Toyota Mirai will retail for 6,700,000 yen (57,600 US dollars) before taxes.
Toyota Motor Corp hopes to sell 400 in Japan and 300 in the rest of the world in the first year.
Fuel cell vehicles run on compressed hydrogen gas, which in the Mirai's case is stored in two tanks mounted underneath the vehicle.
They emit no exhaust, though fossil fuels are used in the production of hydrogen and to pressurise it. Both Honda and Hyundai have or are also experimenting with limited sales and leases of fuel cell cars.
Besides the relatively high cost, buyers will have to contend with finding fuel.
Only a few dozen hydrogen filling stations have been built worldwide, though governments are subsidising the construction of more.
It's an uncertain future that depends both on whether makers can bring down the price, and a wide-enough network of filling stations is built.
Sales will be limited to the primarily urban areas that have stations.
In Japan, with about 30 stations, that means the regions around Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya cities in central and western Japan and the northern part of Kyushu island in the south.
A few stations have opened in California in the United States, and there are plans to build some in the Northeast. Germany and the United Kingdom are among European countries that have or plan to build them.
The first buyers are expected to be affluent people who are environmental aware, and governments and companies that want to go green.
The Mirai can travel 650 to 700 kilometers (400-435 miles) on its two tanks of hydrogen.
Hydrogen may be more expensive than gas initially, because there are so few customers but, over time, Toyota expects it will be cheaper to run a car on hydrogen than with gas.vehicles a year.
The company's Executive Vice President Mitsuhisa Kato said he was confident "its innovation will surpass the Prius."
Both Honda and Hyundai have or are also experimenting with limited sales and leases of fuel cell cars.