A Toyota Mirai hydrogen fuel cell electric car has set a new Guinness World Record for driving the longest distance on a single tank of fuel. A team in California set the record, covering 1360km over two days while using 5.65kg of hydrogen and creating zero carbon dioxide exhaust emissions.

The team used a standard second-generation Mirai fuel cell vehicle to set the record, but the drivers used specialist driving techniques, such as slipstreaming, and smooth use of the accelerator and brakes, to extract the maximum possible range from the single tank of fuel.

Drivers Wayne Gerdes and Bob Winger set out on the journey around southern California from Toyota’s Technical Centre. Day one saw the duo cover 760km including two driver swaps before returning to base. Day two involved more local routes and driving in commuter traffic adding another 600km.

Toyota claims that the new Mirai can travel 30% further than its predecessor, thanks to improved aerodynamics and efficiency, and its revised three tank configuration.

During the trip, the Mirai consumed 5.65kg of hydrogen and passed 12 hydrogen stations along the drive routes. The Mirai was driven mainly during rush hour traffic in temperatures between 18 to 28 degrees Centigrade.

The drive is said to have saved 301kg of carbon dioxide compared with the emissions of an equivalent combustion-engined car travelling the same distance.

It was overseen by Guinness World Records adjudicator Michael Empric, who said, “As a Guinness World Records adjudicator for 10 years, I’ve had the opportunity to witness incredible attempts, including several distance-related feats.

“The Toyota Mirai’s journey without the need to refuel showcases the power of fuel cell electric technology. This technology and the design ingenuity by the team at Toyota led to a history-making moment.”

Some special driving techniques were used but the team also adopted some ideas that can be used in everyday driving to help maximise your economy. These included checking tyre pressures, removing unnecessary weight, being smooth with acceleration and braking, keeping speeds low and using accessories such as air conditioning as little as possible.