The writing is clearly on the wall – fossil-fuel vehicles are going to go the same way as the dinosaurs fairly soon. Whether it’s electric, hydrogen, or biofuels, the race is on for every manufacturer to get an affordable green vehicle onto their showroom floors. Toyota is most known for its Prius when it comes to their green options – but it’s a bit of an understatement to say that the Prius isn’t a particularly exciting car. Well – they’ve got a hydrogen fuel-cell based Tundra that was just shown off at the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) show recently that’s showing eco-friendly cars don’t need to be boring.
The Tundra is one of Toyota’s most popular pick-ups (bakkies) in the States, and it’s been redesigned from the ground up to be a zero-emissions option for utility vehicle enthusiasts who don’t want to lose all their street-cred. The conventional drivetrain was stripped out and a hydrogen fuel cell drivetrain replaced it.
This particular version of the Tundra, called the PIE Pro (through a partnership with Pizza Hut), has something else that makes it unique, though. As if its looks weren’t eye-catching enough, it’s also got a fuel-on pizza factory setup at the back. Unfortunately, you lose the flatbed, but what it lacks in practicality because of it is more than made up for by having tasty snacks driving along with you.
The entire unit consists of a refrigerator, computer-guided robotic arms, and a high-efficiency conveyor oven – and the whole setup is also powered by the hydrogen fuel cells. The best part? From the press of the button to digging into the first slice takes just seven minutes. The conveyor oven cooks it, the robotic arms deliver it to the chopping board, where it’s then divided into six pieces, placed in a box and easily slid through the to passengers in the cabin.
What’s better than being able to lug around whatever you want on a flatbed? Well, topping-laden pizzas whenever you want them on a lengthy road-trip might just beat that. It’s only a prototype doing the rounds at roadshows for now – and doesn’t seem a likely commercial product, but who knows?
Is anyone else’s mouth watering?