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Toyota Fine-S Concept hydrogen fuel cell vehicle

Toyota Highlander-based fuel cell vehicle
Toyota expects the market to be small, but avaialble

Toyota is moving forward despite the bad press and recalls and is looking to the future where it may be the first company to offer a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle that is “affordable”. Toyota is targeting a price of $50,000 for its first retail hydrogen fuel vehicle. Bloomberg reports that the $50,000 figure reflects a 90% reduction in cost for hydrogen fuel cell technology since the mid-2000s.

The first hydrogen powered vehicle would be a sedan with a range equal to that of a gas-powered car. Toyota's Yashihiko Masuda, managing director for advanced automobiles said, "[The hydrogen vehicle would compare to gasoline vehicles] with some added cost."

Masuda said, "Our target is, we don’t lose money with introduction of the vehicle. Production cost should be covered within the price of the vehicle."

Toyota won't talk about how many of the vehicles it expects to sell. Masuda told
Bloomberg that the market would be small, but would have some support. The support would likely be mostly from local and state governments.

The biggest issue facing the adoption of hydrogen-powered vehicles isn’t the cost of buying the vehicles. The big issue is the fact that there is little to no infrastructure to speak of across the country. Most hydrogen fuel station are located in California, and even within California, there are but a handful. Hydrogen also currently costs much more than gasoline.

One of the cost cutting methods that Toyota used to help bring down the price of hydrogen vehicles was to use less platinum on the fuel cell construction. The automaker will reduce the platinum used in fuel cells from about 1.06 ounces per vehicle to the area of 10 grams per vehicle. The price for platinum now is about $1,675 per ounce.

Toyota isn't the only company looking at hydrogen vehicles, GM already has hydrogen powered vehicles in use that are leased to retail customers in the Los Angeles area.

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said, "Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe, and we can have it forever. We need to wake up the federal government."

Before GM starts retail sales in California, the automaker wants at least 40 hydrogen fuel stations in the Southern California area -- currently there are ten. GM believes that 40 stations could support 15 million drivers in the region.

 



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RE: News flash Arnold
By Keeir on 5/7/2010 1:26:07 PM , Rating: 2
Ummm... Murloc.

Your missing the point.

Just because there is alot of Hydrogen in the world, doesn't mean there is alot of free Hydrogen gas used by Fuel Cells.

If you create the criteria that
A. We will chemically create the basic fuel type by investing more energy in its creation than we can extract by using it
and
B. We will look towards using elements that have high abundance on our world/universe.

Then that opens up lots and lots of venues.... which Hydrogen might not be the best one.

Its condition A. thats a real killer, and the fundamental reason I dislike the Hydrogen economy. Currently we have very little acceptable options to create the energy we will need sustainably make Hydrogen... and using NG is just trading one finate resource for another...


"Young lady, in this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" -- Homer Simpson














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