TORRANCE, Calif. (Nov. 19, 2014) – When Marianne Ellis bought the winning ticket for the Toyota Mirai fuel cell vehicle, she had her husband, David, in mind. While attending the annual Environmental Media Awards, she grabbed the last minute ticket as a potential 30th wedding anniversary gift. Surprise honey!
Both David and Marianne were at the Los Angeles Auto Show today to receive ceremonial Toyota keys. They were among the first to get behind the wheel of this revolutionary technology before it arrives in California in the fall of 2015.
A steadfast supporter of environmental efforts, David Ellis had been looking for his next eco-friendly set of wheels. The Environmental Media Association (EMA) auctioned off tickets to win the Toyota Mirai at the Oct. 18 awards ceremony, and Marianne Ellis’s ticket made the couple one of the first owners of the vehicle.
“For us, it’s about being at the cutting edge of change,” said Marianne Ellis. “It’s a chance to support environmental causes and clean energy, while showing it’s possible to make a car like this part of your lifestyle.”
The Toyota Mirai is an all-electric, four-door, mid-size sedan that emits nothing but water vapor. Mirai’s fuel cell stack combines hydrogen gas from tanks with oxygen to produce electricity that powers the vehicle. It takes about five minutes to refuel and has a range of up to 300 miles.
“The first Toyota Mirai drivers will be trailblazers and lead drivers into the future,” said Bob Carter, senior vice president, automotive operations, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. “We’re excited to have David and Marianne lead the fuel cell movement in Los Angeles.”
Proceeds from the vehicle auction benefited EMA environmental programs. EMA President Debbie Levin said participants like Marianne and David Ellis show the willingness of influential Los Angeles residents to learn and embrace new environmentally focused technology.
“We hear so much enthusiasm and demand to be part of the next big thing in sustainable technology,” Levin said. “Through the Prius, Toyota has established the credibility to set off a whole movement around fuel cell technology and the Mirai.”
For more information about the Toyota Mirai, visit www.toyota.com/mirai.
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