Toyota to provide first hydrogen-fueled pace car

Toyota to provide first hydrogen-fueled pace car
In this image provided by Toyota Racing, the Toyota Mirai, a hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle, was unveiled as the pace car for Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race at Richmond International Raceway, Thursday, April 23, 2015, in Richmond, Va. (Lesley Ann Miller/Courtesy of Toyota Racing via AP)

A hydrogen-fueled vehicle will lead the field at a NASCAR race for the first time when a 2016 Toyota Mirai serves as the official pace car Saturday night at Richmond.

The midsize sedan uses no gasoline and emits only . The electric vehicle is powered by hydrogen, refuels in about five minutes and travels up to 300 miles on one tank. It goes on sale in California later this year, with expansion planned.

Ed Laukes, of marketing for Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., said the manufacturer continues to use NASCAR as a vehicle to "showcase our innovation and environmental leadership."

The Toyota Camry Hybrid was the first hybrid vehicle to pace a full NASCAR race when it was used at Charlotte in 2009.

  • Toyota to provide first hydrogen-fueled pace car
    In this image provided by Toyota Racing, the Toyota Mirai, a hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle, was unveiled as the pace car for Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race at Richmond International Raceway, Thursday, April 23, 2015, in Richmond, Va. (Lesley Ann Miller/Courtesy of Toyota Racing via AP)
  • Toyota to provide first hydrogen-fueled pace car
    In this image provided by Toyota Racing, the Toyota Mirai, a hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle, was unveiled as the pace car for Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race at Richmond International Raceway, Thursday, April 23, 2015, in Richmond, Va. (Lesley Ann Miller/Courtesy of Toyota Racing via AP)

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