Turns out, Toyota had a surprising ace in the hole when it came to building the new fuel tanks for the FCV hydrogen fuel cell car, which is coming next year. Well before Toyota became the Toyota Motor Company, it was the Toyota Industries Corporation and it made textile looms. This is important because the main structure of the hydrogen tank is wound carbon fiber. When Toyota set out to increase the strength of the tanks to hold hydrogen stored at 10,000 psi (up from 5,000 in the previous tanks)
They say you can always tell the pioneers. They're the ones with the arrows in their backs. Unfortunately, that was our experience pursuing – and eventually rejecting – the new hydrogen fuel cell-powered Hyundai Tucson.
*UPDATE: As our commentors have pointed out, it costs less than 10 cents a mile to drive an EV today. We apologize for the error.
At a cost of up to $2 million to install a station and barely any hydrogen vehicles on the roads, it might seem like the payback time on a hydrogen refueling setup would be quite long. However, First Element Fuel (FEF) thinks that it will only take five years to make a profit selling H2 to paying customers.
There's no such thing as a free lunch. A free hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle, though? It may become a possibility in Japan, says Automotive News.
Last year Elon Musk came straight out and said fuel cells are so bullsh*t. A couple months ago Slashdot ran an article asking where the future of automobiles was going: Fuel Cell or Battery Electric Vehicles. Mercedes, BMW, Mitsubishi, Renault / Nissan and of course Tesla are fully invested in battery powered electric vehicles, and yet somehow hydrogen fuel cells continue to be brought up as a viable alternative.
With the two main Japanese automakers, Toyota and Honda, leading the charge for hydrogen vehicles (along with Korea's Hyundai), we shouldn't be too surprised that the Japanese government is supporting the technology big time. We knew the national government is ready to kick in the equivalent of $20,000 for a new FCV, but now we learn that at least one prefectural government is ready to chip in another substantial sum: $10,000.
That tailwind Toyota may be feeling in Japan won't be from a stiff breeze off the northern Pacific Ocean. The Japanese automaker is getting ready to start selling its first production hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle in its native country next year. And the government is ponying up real big in incentives, Reuters says.
Zero-emissions vehicle development has never focused purely on off-the-line acceleration. So when a research executive with Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler says it's Okay that companies like Toyota and Hyundai will have a head start selling hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle, it's somewhat believable. But is Daimler really fine with being two years behind? It appears so.
Toyota has finally unveiled its FCV hydrogen fuel cell sedan and its Japanese price. We won't have to wait too long to see the first of these revolutionary vehicles on the roads. It will go on sale in Japan in April 2015 and will come to the US and Europe later that summer.
There is death. There are taxes. And there is the US Department of Energy (DOE) periodically funding millions of dollars worth of grants towards advancing hydrogen fuel-cell technology. This time, the DOE says it will write checks for $20 million, and the goal is pretty specific: bringing the production and distribution costs of hydrogen to less than the equivalent of $4 a gallon.
This would really be news is if a publicly accessible hydrogen refueling station was opening outside of Southern California. But we'll have to wait a bit more for that. What we have here is Cal State Los Angeles announcing that a new hydrogen station is up and running as of Wednesday. And it's within spitting distance of a bunch of freeways, which is always a good thing.
We know that Toyota is gung-ho about delivering its first hydrogen fuel cell sedan to early-adopter markets like southern California and part of Japan next year. The Japanese automaker's European H2 plans have long been part of the mix, but a new press release shows just how committed Toyota is to hydrogen all around the world.
Things are running a little bit behind on Hyundai's hydrogen-powered Tucson Fuel Cell CUV program in the US. The last time we checked in with the South Korean automaker's H2 project, we heard that the first deliveries were supposed to happen by the end of March. Speaking with Hyundai's Kevin Lee at the Hyundai booth at the SAE World Congress this week, we learned that deliveries are now going to happen closer to a month from now.
It's an old question: how safe is hydrogen? With seemingly every singe fire connected to an electric vehicle making national headlines, it's no surprise that understanding the dangers of H2 in a transportation environment is an area of interest. A new report by ProPublica shows that there's more to hydrogen safety than one might initially suspect. 37 more, in fact.
Toyota's Bob Carter has been talking about green cars for years, but it's only been recently that his comments have really caught widespread attention thanks to his disparaging remarks about electric vehicle supporters like Elon Musk and Carlos Ghosn and optimism about hydrogen. Speaking at the opening of the Chicago Auto Show this morning, Carter said that Toyota has claimed the "pole position on CAFE," thanks to its deep hybrid bench. The company's green car cred will continue to grow because
A plug-in electric vehicle can be used to power a house during a winter storm, but if you're more worried about the heat of, say, Death Valley, then maybe you'll want a Mercedes-Benz B-Class F-Cell along. That's the message of a new video from Daimler and starring Diane Kruger (Inglourious Basterds) and Joshua Jackson (Fringe) that promotes the company's hydrogen-powered car. The gist? You can drink the tailpipe emissions.
Volkswagen has staked out a claim to be the industry leader in electric vehicles. One of the executives leading the VW Group into an e-mobililty future is Rudolf Krebs, who took over VW's electrification efforts back in 2010. Today, he is the group commissioner for electric drive systems for the VW Group, and he took part in a green energy round table at the LA Auto Show today. We'll have a more complete write-up on that discussion later, but for now we wanted to tease out something Krebs said a