• Jun 6th 2007 at 1:39PM
  • 16
At the premiere of Ocean's 13 at Grauman's Chinese Theatre last night, Brad Pitt arrived in a BMW Hydrogen 7. Our source didn't say if Angelina Jolie arrived in a different vehicle, but if you want oodles more photos from the event (both Brad and Angelina were there), here's IESB's gratuitous photo gallery with all the stars.

BMW is getting a lot of publicity out of the Hydrogen 7s they've got in America. If you go back and watch the video of the AFVI show from April, you'll notice that this Hydrogen 7 is the exact same one I was able to drive in April (or they switched license plates). I can't tell from this image if the company removed all the "clean energy" markings from the side (visible here) so as not distract from Mr. Pitt's suaveness. Whatever the case, let's pretend that AutoblogGreen is one step closer to being on the A-list. Or something.

[Source: Kris Sharbaugh / Rubenstein Communications, Inc.]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      Regarding the comment of the "abysmal mileage":

      Please note that the BMW Hydrogen 7 Pitt was driving is what is called a Hydrogen Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) Vehicle.

      Hydrogen ICE’s are positive in that they rely largely on the existing engine technology of internal combustion engines and they are helpful in establishing the hydrogen infrastructure. However, these vehicles offer an incredibly poor use of hydrogen (only 10-15% efficient) and because of that combustion process they are NOT pollution free — they emit NOX from the tailpipe.

      Fuel Cell Vehicles on the other hand, are much more efficient - actually 2 to 3 times as efficient as Hydrogen ICE’s. Additionally, because fuel cells do not use the combustion process, but rather use a electrochemical reaction, they are COMPLETELY pollution free — they emit only water vapor from the tailpipe.

      Ultimately to get to the point of commercialization of Fuel Cell Vehicles the hydrogen infrastructure will need to be developed. Hydrogen ICE’s, therefore, are an important stepping stone to this goal.

      Please keep in mind that because of their use of the internal combustion engine it is important that we support the goal of fuel cell vehicles.


      To the comment of "hydrogen is not clean": it is true that the majority of hydrogen produced now is not done in a green manner. However, much research is being done in the area of the production of renewable hydrogen (see the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's page on Hydrogen Production: http://www.nrel.gov/hydrogen/proj_production_delivery.html). Positively, it is the processing of the hydrogen fuel via the fuel cell that is in fact clean. The internal combustion engines we use today do not burn clean and emit the poisonous gases that truly are not clean.

      Instead of being a naysayer, why not support this technology and the work that is being done to make it even more clean? It is without a doubt that ultimately it will be a wide variety of solutions (electric vehicles, fuel cell vehicles, etc) that ends our dependency on oil. Choosing sides and working to derail the work of an opponent technology helps no one.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Hey - At least we're having this argument! 10 years ago, you wouldn't have found this on the web. :-)

      Jonathan Logan / Portland, Oregon, USA
      • 8 Months Ago
      Chris, meet Chris! (grin)
      You seem to be unaware of the rather serious problems with the Hydrogen 7. With a heavily insulated 30 gallon liquid H2 tank filling the trunk, there is hardly any luggage space. The H2 slowly evaporates, and the entire tank of H2 can boil away and be lost in just 2 weeks.

      The V12 engine gets lousy fuel economy, only 4 mpg on liquid H2. Fortunately it also has a 16 gallon petrol tank and gets 15 mpg on that fuel. If you are trying to slow consumption of oil, this isn't the car for you.

      In spite of the huge engine, performance is only average. The Prius gets far better milage and is also faster - 2 seconds faster on 0-60 mph.

      It's all kinda moot. BMW is not selling this model, only leasing to certain select celebrities.
      • 8 Months Ago
      I have something relevant to this conversation... what are your opinions on the aluminum gallium conversion of h2o into h2? this means you no longer need "a) compress/liquefy, (b) store it on site in giant containers, (c) transfer it to bulk tankers, (d) transport it, (e) transfer it again into bulk storage containers, (f) transfer it to our vehicles, (g) carry it around in highly pressurized tanks," as ataraxiastar so ELEGANTLY put it. I've also done a little exerimenting in the garage as well. aluminum, sodium hydroxide, and water in a glass Sobe energy bottle was able to sustain a flame without exploding, or fizzling out for almost 15 to 20 minutes. granted you still have aluminum oxide that would need to be turned back into Al, I think an "on demand" sort of set up may be the answer. I also am curious to know more about the H2 being harmfulto the ozone.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Where's my BMW One with the 1.8 Diesel 4 Door Hatch? Get it off the loading dock and SHIP IT.
      • 8 Months Ago

      ahh some fierce words. good thing you've got a blog-post name to hide behind. go get 'em tiger :)

      YAY for plug ins that feed off the grid!
      • 8 Months Ago
      Was that just a coincidence that there was a bright yellow Hummer right behind the H-ICE car? Nice!
      • 8 Months Ago
      thanks for the positive energy*, amnoelle!

      *pardon the pun :)
      • 8 Months Ago
      I agree with Tim, though he does get a bit carried away. I'll add my own comments.

      The "Hydrogen ICE engine" is a step backwards. Although the tailpipe is cleaner, the inefficiency inherent in H2 production means that use of H2 ICE vehicles will increase fossil fuel consumption compared to equivalent petrofueled vehicles. Fortunately, they will never be marketed as H2 costs considerably more than petrofuels, and the incredible bulk of hydrogen means that H2 ICE cars can never store enough H2 to achieve suitable driving range - the BMW Hydrogen 7 only goes 120 miles on a 30 gallon tank of liquid H2!

      The promise of a future H2 fuel cell car was used by GM and Honda as an excuse to cancel their EV programs. By dangling the promise of someday selling H2 cars, they got the CARB board to cancel the ZEV mandate! Of course, that "someday" keeps getting put off. H2 has been used as a delaying tactic to put off making improvements in fuel economy, and has been used by oil companies to distract people away from other alternatives to petrofuels.

      H2 fuel cell cars are insanely expensive, affordable only by government agencies, due to costly platinum catalysts and special membranes. It is highly unlikely they will ever be affordable to the general public. On the other hand, electric cars are affordable now, and the price of high performance Lithium batteries is dropping as manufacturing improves - the raw materials for LiIon batteries are cheap!

      The biggest barrier H2 promoters face is that people are becoming aware of all the alternatives that are cheaper, more efficient and even cleaner than H2 fueled cars. The future is electric, and H2 fuel is already obsolete.
      • 8 Months Ago
      I would like to respond to Tim in that I agree with Ataraxiastar's comments. Although, there are definitely some problems with Hydrogen power, it's not a lost cause. As Ataraxiastar said there has been a lot of work in this field. Furthermore, I think it is important to support new technology that is more green, even if it is not a perfect solution to the problem. As environmentalists we can't jump down people's throats everytime they search for a solution or try to make a statement that isn't perfect. Environmentalists get bad raps because of the reactions to change that some of us have. The world is NOT going to change overnight, so any effort to move in the right direction is good. I support the stars who have backed green efforts, because I think it helps our fight appeal to the people who aren't as educated on the topics, and gives environmentalists a face associated with the cause. I know that stars don' t always pick the "best" solutions to the problem nor are they themselves the most educated individuals in the cause, but lets look on the bright side...at least people are talking about it and trying to think about alternatives to a hummer.
      • 8 Months Ago
      ataraxiastar- I do NOT support Fuel Cells because:

      (1) Why wait the 20-30 years and spend Billions on the all new Hydrogen infrastructure when we have electricity NOW? Can we afford to wait? Why the stall?

      (2) Battery tech is improving FASTER and is much CHEAPER than fuel cells when you factor in the life of the batteries/cells.

      (3) When you look at the whole energy cycle, Battery Electrics and even PHEVs are 4 TIMES more efficient than even the best fuel cells.

      (4) The vast majority of Hydrogen comes from “Natural” Gas which is a fossil fuel that has 3 TIMES the energy than Hydrogen. Why not just use that in our cars?

      (5) We tried underground storage of SOLID nuclear waste. Now they want to try it with the poisonous gaseous byproducts of gas reformation? Isn’t the ground porous?

      (6) V2G electric PHEVs will help the electric grid become vastly MORE efficient than it already is by leveling the day and evening loads. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vehicle_to_grid

      (7) Electricity is produced from domestic sources and is easily produced from RENEWABLE sources whereas producing Hydrogen from Natural Gas is 3 TIMES more efficient than using the electricity to separate it from H2O.

      (8) Hydrogen, and in fact ANY highly explosive, pressurized/liquefied gas is a wonderful TERROR target of opportunity. http://www.lngdanger.com/ Hydrogen is highly explosive when mixed with Oxygen and the flames are invisible.

      (9) Once Hydrogen is released from other “HYDRO” “CARBONS”, we still have to (a) compress/liquefy, (b) store it on site in giant containers, (c) transfer it to bulk tankers, (d) transport it, (e) transfer it again into bulk storage containers, (f) transfer it to our vehicles, (g) carry it around in highly pressurized tanks, (h) take the electrons from it in the fuel cells. Each step reduces efficiency and each step can and will leak. All this just to run an electric car!! MAKE SENSE??

      (10) Hydrogen is a terrible ozone destroying gas. When released this smallest and lightest of all elements goes right for the stratosphere and there is no natural way to remove it. Unlike CO2, nothing natural on this planet uses it for “fuel.” How many steps in #9 above will leak when they are repeated many MILLIONS of times each year? Earth has life because nature bottled this genie in water here. Other planets where H2 runs free are DEAD! Why? Let the genie sleep and use the sun’s Nuclear Fusion (solar PV & concentration, wind/wave, living biomass which gives us oxygen) and the Moon’s Mass (tide). They won’t destroy the atmosphere’s fragile balance.

      Money and stupidity are the only reasons why we are even talking about Hydrogen. People are lazy, greedy and gullible and they love to watch a good train wreck.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Hydrogen is not clean! It has to be produced somehow.
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