Toyota really jumped on the Back to the Future bandwagon this year when the date that Marty McFly traveled to rolled around. Toyota saw it as an opportunity to promote its Mirai hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, highlighting it as futuristic technology despite its lack of flying capability. It all seemed a little forced, but a lot of people probably never heard about it, given the din of all the other Back to the Future things going on. So, Toyota is following it up with a Back to the Future-themed Mirai concept for the SEMA show in Las Vegas, and you have to hand it to Toyota, it really committed to the premise.

The car in the movie, a DeLorean DMC-12, is obviously a very different sort of vehicle than the Mirai, so the SEMA car has been heavily modified. It does seem like a lot of effort to go to for a car that never actually had anything to do with the movie in the first place, but it is pretty amusing to see, and you can forgive a lot for the sake of a well made joke.

Continue reading to learn more about the Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept.

  • 2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept
  • Year:
    2016
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • 0-60 time:
    6 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    125 mph (Est.)
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept High Resolution Exterior
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The Mirai was clearly designed to be a sedan, so the proportions of the new coupe body might look a little strange, since it’s really just a sedan with two doors. But, you’ll probably get over that fact pretty quickly when the doors open, revealing that they are gullwing-style doors, just like the doors fitted to the DMC-12. The concept rides much lower as well, thanks to its new air suspension, hunched low over a new set of 19-inch wheels.

But apart from that, it’s basically the same as the stock vehicle in front of the A-pillars. It’s a different story around back, however, where the concept is wearing a period-correct California license plate saying “OUTATIME” — yet another reference to the movie. The car doesn’t really have a trunk, and the lid instead slides back to reveal a pop-up Mr. Fusion, which is a good thing to have when you’re out of plutonium. Even the paint is custom, made to resemble the stainless steel body of the DeLorean.

Interior

2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept High Resolution Interior
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The modifications to the interior aren’t quite as extensive as those made to the exterior, but there is still a lot to see. The whole cabin is now lit with blue LEDs, and there is a custom center console to house the obligatory flux capacitor. This looks to be emanating blue light as well, but there is clearly some photoshop work going on, so it’s hard to tell. The head unit is replaced by a tablet that is integrated into the dash. This replaces the time travel controls in the movie car, and even if it looks a little awkward, it’s still nowhere near as bulky as the original. The interior is otherwise stock, but upholstery was never exactly the focus of any of the Back to the Future movies anyway.

Drivetrain

2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept High Resolution Drivetrain
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Toyota hasn’t made any changes to the drivetrain of the car, but this is exactly the point. The word “mirai” is Japanese for “future,” and this whole tie-in with Back to the Future is to show the car as being futuristic. It is essentially an electric car with a hydrogen fuel cell instead of a big battery. The idea is that this saves weight and reduces refueling time, two major weak points of battery powered vehicles. The car makes 152 horsepower and 247 pound-feet of torque, which is pretty reasonable numbers for the compact sedan segment. What is remarkable about the car is not the power numbers themselves, but that it is a hydrogen-powered car that you can actually buy. That’s something that isn’t supposed to happen until the future, just in case that message hasn’t quite sunk in yet.

Conclusion

2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept High Resolution Exterior
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Toyota’s Back to the Future-focused publicity campaign for the Mirai has been pretty heavy handed, stopping only just short of sending someone around to your house to say “get it?” over and over again. But, at least with this show car, the company is having some fun with the idea. It’s a big, crazy thing to do, but that’s what SEMA is for, and it’s very entertaining to watch.

  • Leave it
    • * we get it already, Toyota
    • * flux capacitor reduces rear seating room
    • * doesn’t actually travel through time

Press Release

This fuel cell vehicle looks ready for the fourth dimension. Toyota will bring its exclusive Back to the Future-inspired Mirai to the 2015 SEMA Show in Las Vegas November 3-6, with added features to impress visitors. MV Designz helped Toyota re-imagine Doc Brown’s time machine for today’s adventurers, complete with gullwing doors and a heads-up display of the time-traveling destination.

2016 Toyota Mirai Back to the Future Concept High Resolution Interior
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Drawing on Back to the Future movie magic and modern-day specialty design, the 2016 Mirai “time machine” features a number of modifications:

Conversion from four-door to two-door coupe body style
Gullwing doors
Custom 19-inch “Infinity” LED wheels and tires
Custom air-ride suspension
Blue LED lighting throughout vehicle
Custom brushed-aluminum paint
Heads-up destination clock display
Integrated tablet replacing original equipment head unit
Flux capacitor housed in a custom center console

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Press release
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