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Last week at the Frankfurt Motor Show, Mercedes-Benz announced their plans to start series production of fuel cell vehicles in 2010. Aside from the fact that the car would be based on the B-Class, not many other details were given. Thanks to Mercedes spokesman Matthias Brock we now have some additional information. The production volumes in the first years will remain quite low at several hundred per year. Because of those low volumes, costs remain high and according to Brock they aren't representative, so the company won't give details right now.

Similar to what Honda has indicated for the new FCX next year, Mercedes is only planning to lease the vehicles initially rather than sell. The fuel cell B-class will made available in both Europe and the United States but we won't know lease prices until closer to release time. The press release indicated that the production models will use a new generation of fuel cell that is more efficient and has greater power density. Brock also confirmed that like all the previous fuel cell vehicles built and tested by Mercedes, the new model will continue to use stacks built by Ballard Power Systems. We're still three years away and Honda should be releasing the production version of the FCX concept that we drove last fall sometime in 2008. General Motors will also have their Project Driveway program under their belt by then and should also be approaching production of their fifth-generation stack. It will be interesting to see how far Mercedes can advance the technology in the intervening period.

[Source: Mercedes-Benz]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 3 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      It reminds me of a circular game of follow the leader - Daimler does it because GM does it cause Toyota does it cause Honda does it cause Ford does it cause Damler does it... None of their research engineers will tell them "its a bad idea" as their jobs depend on the H2 hype continuing.

      Note however that all are just leasing a handful, and none are going into serious production or sales.
      • 7 Years Ago
      The next gen. Mercedes B-class FCV will need to be ALOT better to even be leasing a few hundered to utilities/gov't businesses.

      The current FCV from Mercedes only goes 110 miles, and has just 65kw of power (or in other words, about 85hp)
      • 7 Years Ago
      They should spend all their R&D efforts on making a better battery. H2 fuel cells is far less efficient than electric cars. We've said this, time and time again but the pro-H2 lobby never stops.
      http://www.efcf.com/reports/E17.pdf