Toyota is aiming to provide customers with more choice as the car industry heads towards net zero. Recognising that it will take time before all vehicles are carbon neutral, the car giant’s stance is that simultaneously promoting the carbon neutralisation of vehicles currently in use is essential.

Toyota Gazoo Racing has been demonstrating what might be possible at the Tokyo Auto Salon and Outdoor Show, by showing a classic AE86 Corolla converted to run using a hydrogen engine – the AE86 H2 Concept. It was displayed alongside a battery electric AE86 conversion, the AE86 BEV Concept.

The company said it has used the knowledge it has gained through its running of a hydrogen-powered race car in Japan’s Super Taikyu series to create the AE86 H2 Concept, a vehicle that provides the noise and feel sensations of an internal combustion engine. The conversion uses high-pressure hydrogen fuel tanks (like those in the Mirai hydrogen fuel cell car). Other modifications have been kept to a minimum, preserving the look and character of the AE86.

The AE86 BEV Concept maintains as far as possible the AE86’s lightweight and front-rear weight balance while gaining the strong drive force characteristics of a BEV, together with a manual transmission in a vehicle that has the potential to deliver even greater driving pleasure than the original. Elements have been used from a wide range of Toyota electrified sources, including a motor from the hybrid electric Tundra pick-up and a battery unit that’s also used in the Prius Plug-in.

Both concepts also look to carbon neutrality by re-using seats, seatbelts and seatbelt pads made from recycled materials.