JAY LENO SET TO DRIVE THE BMW HYDROGEN 7 ON U.S. ROADWAYS
Woodcliff Lake, NJ – September 17, 2007... BMW today announced that Jay Leno became the latest person to receive keys to a BMW Hydrogen 7 – the first hydrogen-powered luxury sedan. The Emmy-winning comedian and host of The Tonight Show received his BMW Hydrogen 7 at his famed car garage in Burbank, California, which is fittingly a "green garage" that receives a great deal of its energy from steam power.
"As an avid car enthusiast I'm always interested in the future of automotive technology. With the BMW Hydrogen 7 I can experience all the fun and great features of a performance car, yet know that I'm being environmentally friendly at the same time! I look forward to driving the Hydrogen 7 and learning more about hydrogen as a fuel for our future."
In his "green garage," Jay uses giant steam and natural gas engines from the 19th century to effectively reduce his energy needs – transforming his garage into a self-sufficient power station. According to Jay, there is no reason why a garage full of old cars can't be environmentally responsible, even if it means having to go back more than a century for the technology. Working with expert consultants in a variety of fields to analyze his garage's energy use and devise alternative energy systems, Jay is committed to upgrading his nearly 20,000-sq.-ft. garage with the latest environmentally friendly shop equipment and products – and driving the BMW Hydrogen 7 is his latest example of this.
Running in hydrogen mode, the BMW Hydrogen 7 essentially emits nothing but water vapor, representing a major step in reducing harmful CO2 emissions. It is not a concept car, but a production model vehicle that has successfully completed the entire Product Development Process. While the BMW Hydrogen 7 is not for sale, it is considered to be a milestone in bringing forward hydrogen as the sustainable fuel for individual transportation.
BMW believes that hydrogen will replace petroleum as the long-term alternative to fossil fuel, and hopes the Hydrogen 7 will play a pioneering role in driving forward the hydrogen technologies that will ensure our mobility in the future. Through a program dubbed the Hydrogen 7 Pioneers Program, BMW is giving industry leaders and prominent figures in entertainment, politics, business and more a BMW Hydrogen 7 for their daily use.
The hydrogen pioneers will be instrumental in helping people understand that hydrogen technology is here, it is now and it is what BMW Group believe holds the key to our future mobility. By harnessing the power and influence of individuals who, like Leno, are at the forefront of their respective disciplines, BMW hopes to continue to generate support of hydrogen-drive vehicles in the short term and stimulate demand for a viable hydrogen infrastructure in the long-term.
Leno is one of the first Americans who BMW plans to announce in the coming months that will help the company in its mission to build widespread support of hydrogen as a viable alternative to fossil fuels.
While Leno and BMW's hydrogen pioneers will be the first group to be given access to the BMW Hydrogen 7 in the U.S. for a longer period of use, a number of entertainers, politicians, business leaders and more have opted for a BMW Hydrogen 7 as their energy-efficient ride of choice. Those who have recently chosen the vehicle include Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie at the "Ocean's 13" premiere in Hollywood; Fox Entertainment Chairman Peter Liguori at the FOX All-Star Party in Santa Monica; Richard Gere and Sharon Stone at the Cinema for Peace Gala in Berlin; and "An Inconvenient Truth" producer Davis Guggenheim (Oscar® for the best Documentary Feature) and Best Foreign Language Film Oscar® winner, director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck at the 2007 Academy Awards; among others. The vehicle has also made an impact oversees, with luminaries such as Michael Glos, German Federal Minister for Economy and Technology, and Günter Verheugen, Vice President of the European Commission, world renowned soprano Anna Netrebko and many others covering more than 1.3 million miles worldwide till now.