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Daimler fuel cell system development director Christian Mohrdieck told a conference in Stuttgart recently that by the 2012-2015 time frame they will be able mass-produce fuel cell cars on a cost competitive basis with other technologies. If so that would be put them only a couple of years behind General Motors, which expect to be able to do that by the end of this decade. So far Daimler has built over 100 fuel cell vehicles that have accumulated over 2.3 million miles of testing. When Daimler announced in 1990 that they wanted to have fuel cell vehicles in production by 2005, they underestimated the problems of bringing aerospace technology to cars. However, years of development seem to be getting very close to producing a cost-effective stack. Hyundai also recently announced that they want to build fuel cell vehicles in that same time frame and GM is developing a fuel cell version of the Volt in parallel with the ICE version. Now there is just the pesky problems of producing and distributing all the hydrogen.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. req'd]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      It may be FAR less efficient, but it is also significantly less expensive to store unused renewable (and free) solar, wind, wave electricity as hydrogen instead of using expensive and complex batteries.


      BUT, there is still that pesky $Trillion dollar infrastructure problem. In fact, Vehicle to Grid (V2G) will add MILLIONS of batteries to the level out the grid and significantly reduce the costs of all forms of electricity so hydrogen may be moot.

      • 7 Years Ago
      There is also the pesky problem of H2 storage. High pressure carbon fiber tanks or cryogenic dewar tanks don't come cheap, and metal hydrides are even more expensive.

      Tim, it is more expensive to store energy via H2 than by batteries. Not only is H2 less efficient, but you've overlooked the expensive storage problem and the even more expensive fuel cells. Also, batteries are actually less complex than fuel cells.

      Mercedes is only making this announcement because GM made a similar announcement. I'm betting that in 2010 GM will announce that their fuel cell production is being delayed a few more years, and Mercedes, Honda, Toyota and all the rest will do the same. Of course, the successful introduction of several plug-ins at that time will assure H2 cars will never really make it to market.
      • 7 Years Ago
      OK, I'm marking this on my calendar: 2015, buy hydrogen car.
      • 7 Years Ago
      My next care will be a Plugin Hybrid.
      MB can BS all they want, I ain't buying Hydrogen.
      • 7 Years Ago
      What if you could DOUBLE the fuel mileage of ANY standard existing car by simply modifying the automatic transmission so that it would capture and reuse 97+% of the breaking energy and could accelerate from 0-60 in 4 seconds?

      What if this modification only cost around $3,000.00 without using batteries or electric motors and also doubled the life of the car?