Remember when Toyota raced a hydrogen-powered Corolla with Akio Toyoda behind the wheel? Instead of using fuel-cell EV technology to drive the racecar, Toyota actually used hydrogen as a form of fuel to power the 1.6-liter three-cylinder turbo derived from the GR Yaris.

As a result, Toyota was able to increase its power to 304 PS and it was also able to compete in 24-hour endurance races in Japan. With Toyota looking at more than one source of zero-emissions mobility like battery-electric vehicles (BEVs), Toyota is not saying goodbye to internal combustion just yet.

Hydrogen-fuelled Toyota Corolla Cross has GR Corolla’s 1.6 turbo image

To prove that, Toyota actually took a Corolla Cross, put in a 1.6-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine derived from the GR Corolla hot hatch, and converted it to run on hydrogen fuel. This is the Corolla Cross H2 Hydrogen Concept, and Toyota may be on to something here.

It comes with a hydrogen tank from the Mirai fuel cell EV (FCEV) but instead of converting hydrogen into electricity, this particular concept actually uses hydrogen to power the 1.6-liter turbocharged engine. No output figures were mentioned although the Corolla Cross H2 Hydrogen Concept likely produces the same amount of power as the regular hot hatch at over 300 PS. It even comes with the same 6-speed manual gearbox.

Hydrogen-fuelled Toyota Corolla Cross has GR Corolla’s 1.6 turbo image

Since it burns hydrogen instead of fossil fuel, it doesn’t produce CO2 which makes zero-emissions mobility possible aside from BEVs. Toyota is still busy conducting tests on the Corolla Cross H2 Hydrogen Concept, but if Toyota can make this technology viable for the public, it could mean the internal combustion engine (ICE) could live on for many more years to come.

Hydrogen-fuelled Toyota Corolla Cross has GR Corolla’s 1.6 turbo image

While EVs may be all the rage today, Toyota still has faith in ICEs. Do you think Toyota is heading in the right direction? Let us know in the comments.