VW CEO Says That Hydrogen Fuel Cells Have Failed to Live up to Promises
March 22, 2013 9:36 AM
comment(s) - last by
No fuel cell vehicles from VW on the horizon
A few years ago there were a number of automotive manufacturers putting serious money into
hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles
. These vehicles promised to have a driving range similar to a conventional gasoline-powered automobile, but produce no emissions to pollute the atmosphere.
However, the vehicles faced several daunting challenges, including the lack of a hydrogen fuel infrastructure and the fact that hydrogen is highly flammable and difficult to store.
Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn stated this week that hydrogen fuel cells have failed to live up to promises and are unlikely to become an efficient and cost-effective way to power cars in the near future.
Winterkorn said, "I do not see the infrastructure for fuel cell vehicles, and I do not see how hydrogen can be produced on large scale at reasonable cost. I do not currently see a situation where we can offer fuel cell vehicles at a reasonable cost that consumers would also be willing to pay."
While Volkswagen doesn't see a near-term future with hydrogen vehicles, other manufacturers continue to move forward with the technology. Mercedes-Benz reached a deal with Ford and Nissan-Renault with a goal of selling the first production fuel-cell vehicle starting in 2017.
Back in 2010, a study was
predicting 670,000 fuel cell powered vehicles would be sold annually within a decade. So far, that prediction doesn't seem likely to come true.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
3/25/2013 11:44:23 AM
Splitting water is no good since you spend half of your energy producing oxygen which is unavoidable. For this reason, I don't think a hydrogen economy will ever happen. It's just too energy inefficient to waste half of your energy producing a useless byproduct.
3/27/2013 9:48:41 PM
You can still sell this oxygen to other sectors like medical and emergency responders, even exploration (underwater and mountain climbing). It's not as useless as the by-product pollution coming from refineries and traditional fuels.
"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone
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