Carbon Negative: Toyota Working On a Carbon Capture Filtration System

Chris Teague
by Chris Teague

Toyota has taken an all-around beating for its decision to focus on a diverse array of alternative fuels and electrification options instead of going all-in on EVs, but that approach has started to look more prudent as other companies struggle with slower-than-expected growth. The Japanese auto giant has developed hydrogen powertrains and been a staunch supporter of hybrid technologies, and now it is testing a new engine that can remove carbon from the air.

The carbon capture engine first appeared in a GR Corolla race car last year as part of a hydrogen fuel cell powertrain. It was already a zero-emissions configuration, but the added filtration system can actually remove carbon from the air around the car.

“This type of technology to capture carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is advancing rapidly in the infrastructure industry. But as far as we know, Toyota is the first company to test this technology in a vehicle,” Naoaki Ito, Gazoo Racing’s project general manager, said.

Toyota’s carbon capture system uses two filters and a fluid reservoir that traps carbon dioxide. It uses no energy, and the fluid moves into the reservoir using the engine’s heat. The automaker worked with Kawasaki Heavy Industries to develop the filters, which are similar to the technology used in modern exhaust systems.

Though Toyota tested the system in a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, it said the tech would work with any motorized vehicle, including ones with gas engines. Right now, however, the system doesn’t capture as much carbon as a traditional vehicle produces in regular operation, so there’s work to do to make it commercially viable.

[Image: Toyota]

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Chris Teague
Chris Teague

Chris grew up in, under, and around cars, but took the long way around to becoming an automotive writer. After a career in technology consulting and a trip through business school, Chris began writing about the automotive industry as a way to reconnect with his passion and get behind the wheel of a new car every week. He focuses on taking complex industry stories and making them digestible by any reader. Just don’t expect him to stay away from high-mileage Porsches.

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2 of 16 comments
  • Norman Stansfield Norman Stansfield on Feb 26, 2024

    Need a way that's energy efficient & good for the environment to capture carbon.


  • Lorenzo Lorenzo on Feb 26, 2024

    I hope the carbon filter isn't TOO efficient. People (and all life on this planet) are all carbon-based lifeforms. I don't want to get suctioned by a carbon filter while driving!

  • Ajla It's weird how surveys comes to conclusions like this when about 100% of the responses then mock the results.
  • Jkross22 It very much depends on the dealer. Just bought a replacement for the CX9. A local dealer gave a $500 discount on a CPO car while another one gave a few thousand dollar discount but was out of the area and we had to drive 5 hours to get. The local dealer still seems to think it's 2022 and cars appreciate when sitting on the lot. I wish them luck.
  • Ajla "and the $34K price doesn't seem too steep." Respectfully disagree. This would be okay at $29K. $34k clangs into way too much.
  • FreedMike i puUut pUniZhR sTikKr oNn mY KoMMpAs aNd nOW i hEeR Eegle SkReem. (And no one knows it's made in Mexico.)
  • SCE to AUX What a farce.Besides, "patriotism" has been redefined a hundred different ways in the last 20+ years. Disagree with one of them, and you're a traitor.And for starters, Jeep is a Stellantis brand with its HQ in the Netherlands. If this persistent myth about patriotism is ever cracked, the brand is doomed.