Toyota’s boat lineup (you knew Toyota made boats, right?) is going green with the introduction of the experimental PONAM-28V with a hybrid powertrain. The public can’t yet take this watercraft for an electrified voyage, though. Instead, the company will give three of them to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government for evaluation from July 2018 to March 2021.
Toyota claims this is “Japan's first leisure craft with a parallel hybrid system”. A 3.0-litre internal combustion engine produces 256 horsepower. The electric motor contributes an additional 48 hp and a hefty 258 pound-feet of torque. A lithium-ion battery has a capacity of 11 kilowatt-hours. The parallel hybrid lets the watercraft run purely on electric power at times when navigators desire low emissions and want to make less noise.
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government will initially use the 28-foot boats for maintenance duty on piers and ports facilities. It’ll also offer canal tours to residents. Once the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games begin, the hybrid boats will transport people to locations along the waterfront. At the end of the test, the government will report back about the hybrid system’s performance.
The Ponam-28V is the smallest model in Toyota’s boat lineup. The version available to consumers (above) uses a 3.0-litre four-cylinder engine that’s also available in the Land Cruiser and Hilux. In its maritime tune, the engine produces 256 hp. The watercraft features a hull that uses a mix of aluminium, fibreglass, and carbon fibre. Prices in Japan start at 19.2 million yen (around £140,000). The company also offers the larger Ponam-31 and Ponam-35 models.
If you’d prefer more power, a large enough pile of money might convince Lexus to build you another example of its one-off Sport Yacht Concept (above). Displayed in Miami in January 2017, the boat featured two 5.0-litre V8s – like the one in the RC F or LC 500. The total output of 885 horsepower allowed for a top speed of 49 miles per hour.
Toyota to Conduct Hybrid Boat Feasibility Study in Tokyo
Toyota City, Japan, March 31, 2017―Toyota Motor Corporation (hereinafter, Toyota) has developed Japan's first leisure craft with a parallel hybrid system. Subsequently, Toyota will conduct a feasibility study of hybrid boats from July 2018 to March 2021 in Tokyo.
Specifically, Toyota will loan the hybrid "PONAM-28V" model to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government with no charge. In addition to its use for the maintenance of piers and other port facilities at the Port of Tokyo, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government will use the PONAM-28V for visits to Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games* venues along the Tokyo Bay waterfront by the relevant parties. In addition, the PONAM-28V will also be utilized for canal tours at the Port of Tokyo for Tokyo residents and visitors.
By adopting the parallel hybrid system in a leisure craft, Toyota is striving to assure customers of the cruising range by utilizing two types of power generators―the engine and electric motor. Furthermore, the EV(Electric Vehicle) mode cruising realizes low emissions, high fuel efficiency, and low noise levels. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government will provide the hybrid boat's operational data to Toyota, to help validate the overall performance of the hybrid system, and to verify the convenience and improvement areas of hybrid boats.
Toyota has thus far released the 35-foot "PONAM-35", 31-foot "PONAM-31", and 28-foot "PONAM-28V". Toyota will continue to work on its marine business, developing appealing mobility products in the nautical field so as to attain the goal of providing our customers with a fulfilling lifestyle.
Main Specifications of the Hybrid System
Engine 2,982 [cc]
Maximum Output [kW(PS)/r.p.m.]
Maximum Output [kW]
Maximum Torque [N･m]
Drive Battery (Lithium-ion Battery)
Total Battery Capacity [kWh]
*Toyota is a worldwide partner of Olympic and worldwide partner of Paralympic