Fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) powered by hydrogen were taken more seriously at the LA Auto Show and Tokyo Motor Show last month than ever before, but their presence in the market is still shrouded in fog. Soichiro Okudaira, chief officer of research and development at Toyota, is confident fuel cell costs will come down enough to make FCEVs "just one alternative of the eco cars," but that probably won't happen for another 10-15 years.
Zero Emission Vehicles
The US Environmental Protection Agency has granted a waiver to California's vehicle emissions standards, according to a statement released by the California Clean Cars Campaign. The campaign coalition supports California's comprehensive Clean Cars Program, which is targeted at reducing vehicle-related smog, particle pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, and includes a zero emission vehicle standard.
Arnaud Montebourg, France's Minister of Industrial Recovery, was handed the keys to the first Renault Zoe electric car on December 17 by Carlos Tavares, Renault Group's chief operating officer. Renault calls the Zoe the "first broadly affordable full-electric car," and the EV qualifies for a 7,000-euro government incentive in France, bringing the price down to 13,700 euros (including VAT).
What's up with the state of Washington's commitment to electric vehicles? It's a place where you can find fast charging stations and coffeehouses galore, but the state has backed away from offering incentives and requirements for zero emission vehicles according to Green Car Reports.
Renault isn't afraid to acknowledge global warming, is in alignment with alliance partner Nissan's CEO Carlos Ghosn's prediction that electric vehicles will make up 10 percent of the world market by 2020 and is spending (with Nissan) €4 billion ($5.25 billion U.S. at today's exchange rate) on a zero-emissions program. These are the core parts of Renault's complete zero-emission strategy, which was released this week. You can find the complete plan after the jump. Here are the highlights:
Looks like the Aussies are getting their very first zero-emissions-vehicle, the Blade Runner. Converted from the gasoline-powered Hyundai Getz (as seen above), the Blade Runner uses an AC motor powered by twin banks of lithium iron phosphate batteries and is capable of going up to 100 kilometers (62.5 miles) on a single charge. Although not particularly cheap at $35,000 for the retrofit (about $32,000 US), the Blade Runner is still the first of its kind in Oz, and it comes from a small manufactu