2023 Toyota Mirai Review

2023 Toyota Mirai Review

The 2023 Toyota Mirai offers a unique driving experience as an electric car powered by hydrogen, making it a distinctive presence within the automotive market. Highlighted by its striking design and upscale interior, the Mirai’s key feature lies in its fuel-cell powertrain, producing a substantial 182 horsepower. This powertrain enables it to travel over 400 miles before necessitating a hydrogen refill, a considerable advantage over its electric vehicle (EV) competitors like the 2023 Tesla Model 3 or 2023 BMW i4. Though not as quick as charging station-reliant EV models, the Mirai stands out due to its refined ride quality and lively handling, providing a comfortable driving experience.

What’s New for 2023 Enhancements?

2023 Toyota Mirai Enhancements

The 2023 Mirai retains the same specifications and pricing as the previous year, with no significant alterations or upgrades for the latest model.

Pricing and Ideal Choice

Toyota offers two primary configurations for the Mirai: the base XLE trim and the premium Limited model. The base variant comes equipped with standard features such as heated, power-adjustable seats, keyless entry, faux-leather upholstery, and a sizable 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen. Every Mirai version benefits from a $15,000 fuel credit and 21 days of complimentary vehicle rentals, ensuring an added advantage when travel demands navigation away from hydrogen fueling station areas.

EV Motor, Power, and Performance

The Mirai operates using a fuel-cell electric powertrain, converting hydrogen into electricity through an onboard fuel cell – a chemical laboratory on wheels. This unique system involves the creation of electricity by stripping electrons from hydrogen atoms, subsequently bonding hydrogen with oxygen to form water, while the electrons power the electric motor. The Mirai’s electric motor generates 182 horsepower and delivers this power to the rear wheels via a direct-drive transmission. Despite Toyota’s reported 9.1 seconds for the Mirai to reach 60 mph, the motor’s immediate power delivery provides a spirited feel during city driving. The rear-wheel drive layout contributes to the vehicle’s commendable athleticism while preserving a balanced and composed ride quality.

Fuel Economy and Real-World MPGe

The exact fuel economy estimates for the 2023 Mirai from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are pending. However, Toyota suggests an impressive range of up to 402 miles per hydrogen fill-up. For the 2022 XLE model, the estimated fuel economy is reported as 76 MPGe in the city and 71 MPGe on the highway. Meanwhile, the 2022 Limited model experiences a slight reduction, offering fuel economy figures of 67 in the city and 64 on the highway.

Interior, Comfort, and Cargo Space

2023 Toyota Mirai Interior, Comfort, and Cargo

The Mirai boasts a captivating and stylish cabin that complements its sleek exterior design. Distinguished by copper-colored trim elements accentuating the dash and door panels, the predominantly digital instrument cluster and large infotainment screen significantly dominate the upper dashboard, offering a futuristic and opulent feel befitting its starting price of $50,000. Opting for the top-tier Limited trim further elevates the Mirai’s comfort level by introducing premium amenities such as a moonroof, heated-and-ventilated front and rear seats, and a three-zone automatic climate control system.

Advanced Infotainment and Connectivity

Standard in the Mirai is a substantial 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system, featuring an array of advanced features including a Wi-Fi hotspot, a premium 14-speaker JBL audio system, SiriusXM satellite radio, in-dash navigation, and seamless support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration.

Safety Assurance and Driver-Assistance Technology

Following Toyota’s reputation, the Mirai is equipped with a standard suite of advanced driver-assistance features. For detailed crash test results, drivers can refer to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include standard automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control.

Warranty and Maintenance Coverage

Like other Toyota models, the Mirai offers a standard warranty package, including three years of complimentary scheduled maintenance. Additionally, purchasers benefit from a purchase incentive that provides three years or $15,000 worth of free fuel, making it an attractive proposition in the market.

  • Limited warranty covers 3 years or 36,000 miles
  • Powertrain warranty covers 5 years or 60,000 miles
  • Complimentary scheduled maintenance is covered for 3 years or 36,000 miles

Advantages and Limitations of the 2023 Toyota Mirai

Here are the Advantages and Limitations of the 2023 Toyota Mirai:

2023 Toyota Mirai Advantages 2023 Toyota Mirai Limitations
It offers an extended Driving Range. It has a longer driving range compared to numerous battery-electric vehicles. Scarcity of Hydrogen Stations because of the limited availability of hydrogen fueling stations.
It has a spacious interior. It provides a roomy and comfortable interior space for occupants. Limited Market Availability currently as it is available only in California and Hawaii regions.
Complimentary Hydrogen Fuel as newly purchased vehicles come with a benefit of up to $15,000 worth of free hydrogen fill-ups, valid for up to six years. Restriction in Middle Rear Seat Usability as a tall powertrain tunnel could limit the usability of the middle rear seat.
Abundance of Standard Safety Features as it is equipped with numerous standard safety features and driver aids.

Specifications

Here are the complete specifications of the 2021 Toyota Mirai:

Name   Specifications
Vehicle Type The 2021 Toyota Mirai is a rear-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan equipped with a mid-motor.
Base Price Starting prices are set at $50,455 for the XLE model and $66,955 for the Limited variant.
Motor Powered by a synchronous AC motor generating 182 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque, accompanied by a 1.2-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. The fuel-cell features a solid-polymer-electrolyte proton-exchange membrane, producing 172 horsepower.
Transmission Operates on a direct drive transmission system.
Dimensions The vehicle’s dimensions include a wheelbase of 114.9 inches, a length of 195.8 inches, a width of 74.2 inches, and a height of 57.9 inches. Passenger volume ranges from 93 to 94 cubic feet, while the trunk volume is 10 cubic feet. Estimated curb weight is between 4300 to 4350 pounds (Car and Driver estimate).
Performance (C/D EST) Acceleration results for the 2021 Mirai are an estimated 0 to 60 mph in 9.1 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 17.0 seconds, with a top speed of 106 mph.
EPA Fuel Economy (MFR’S EST) The manufacturer’s estimated fuel economy is between 65–74 MPGe combined, with city estimates ranging from 67–76 MPGe and highway ratings from 64–71 MPGe. The vehicle’s range is anticipated to be between 357 to 402 miles.

Conclusion

The 2023 Toyota Mirai faces an uphill battle in a rapidly growing battery-electric vehicle market. Toyota had an opportunity to impress potential buyers by highlighting the Mirai’s distinctive features, despite the challenges posed by hydrogen fuel. However, the Mirai falls short of achieving a standout status in key areas. Its design resembles a tamer version of a Lexus, and although its interior offers comfort, it lacks in remarkable design or premium materials. The driving experience, while smooth, lacks the expected vigor, especially considering the price tag, positioning itself below more affordable models such as the Camry.

Upgrading from the XLE trim, priced at $49,500, to the $66,000 Limited edition enhances the Mirai with additional features. Nonetheless, these improvements are not extraordinary, and many of them are available in other Toyota models, questioning the Mirai’s unique value proposition.

While Toyota seems less inclined toward a fully battery-electric future, the Mirai, in its second iteration, fails to truly emphasize the potential of hydrogen-based vehicles. This sedan, good but not exceptional, doesn’t compellingly advocate for enduring the initial challenges of adopting hydrogen technology. As a pioneering effort in steering the world away from its current path of electrification, the Mirai lacks the distinctive traits needed to significantly sway public perception and elevate the car to new heights.

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