Tesla CEO Elon Musk: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Cars are "Bulls**t"
October 23, 2013 1:18 PM
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He said the best hydrogen fuel cell technology doesn't compare to the energy density of lithium-ion batteries
CEO Elon Musk has made his view on hydrogen fuel cell cars clear: they're bullshit.
In a a speech at a new Tesla service center in Germany, Musk told employees and enthusiasts that those who oppose electric vehicles (EV) but are onboard with new technology like hydrogen fuel cell cars need to know that it's more of a marketing gimmick than a real clean energy solution.
“And then they’ll say certain technologies like fuel cell … oh god … fuel cell is so bullshit. Except in a rocket," said Musk.
More specifically, Musk said that even the best hydrogen fuel cell technology doesn't compare to the energy density of lithium-ion batteries, such as that found in Tesla's Model S.
Check out the video below for Musk's comments, which start at the 29-minute mark:
Musk may hold this opinion because his company only offers EVs for the time being, but not all automakers feel that hydrogen fuel cell is a waste of time.
Earlier this month, Toyota said it was
passing up EVs
in favor of more hybrids and its first hydrogen fuel cell release in 2015. According to Toyota Chairman Takeshi Uchiyamada, EV batteries need at least two major breakthroughs before they can replace gasoline or hybrid vehicles.
"The reason why Toyota doesn’t introduce any major [all-electric product] is because we do not believe there is a market to accept it,” said Uchiyamada. "I personally expect a lot from this hydrogen fuel cell technology. If government and industry work together, this might be part of the long-term solution."
Back in July, General Motors (GM) and Honda announced that they'd
team up for fuel cell vehicle technology
as well. They hope to commercialize the technology by 2020.
However, GM still has a foot in the EV market as well. In fact, it wants to directly compete with Tesla by offering
a 200-mile affordable EV
. Tesla said it is working on a new vehicle with the same range, which aims to be more affordable than the current Model S. GM is also gunning for Tesla with
luxury Cadillac EVs
Others onboard with Musk's love for EVs is Volkswagen, which wants to
lead the EV market by 2018
starting with the eGolf and eUp!, and Nissan, which has upped its EV efforts by cutting purchase and lease prices of the all-electric Leaf and even
offering free charging for a year
to Leaf owners in Texas (and eventually other states).
Tesla is certainly a superpower in the EV startup realm. The company successfully paid off its $465 million government loans nine years early, pulled
a surprise profit
for Q2 2013 with a revenue of $405.1 million, unveiled new tech for its Model S (swappable battery tech) and the Model S even snagged the
highest safety rating
from the NHTSA. It makes sense that Musk would try to keep this momentum going by advocating EVs over hydrogen fuel cells.
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Musk like Wozniak
10/23/2013 8:25:42 PM
Why does it seem that seemingly every time Steve Wozniak opens his mouth it is to either to decry how disappointed he is with every new Apple product, an Apple movie that did not invite him to participate in, or to claim how his ideas are so much better?
Why is it also that seemingly every time Elon Musk opens his mouth it is to decry a substitute technology to his or to claim how his ideas are so much better?
Their words come out as poorly scripted heels in WWE. Hydrogen fuel cells don't likely have much of a future in automobiles but his blabbering about them comes across as somebody who did not do any research on it but that talking with enough confidence will get people to believe that he knows what he's talking about.
What I gather is that Musk has wrapped his ego, his identity, and sense of self worth into Tesla being a success via electric engines (and no other method of power) and is scared Skittles that anything else may be a threat. If anything ever did prove to be more efficient, safe, and marketable than electric, Tesla would have to adjust. That adjustment would mean that Musk would have to admit to being wrong once in his life. To him it would be the end of the world.
Thousands of scientists around the world are working on hundreds of new types of energy. They don't deserve the disrespect that Elon Musk throws at them. If he had more class he would realize that too. Or maybe he just can't help himself.
RE: Musk like Wozniak
10/23/2013 10:54:19 PM
People forget that just weeks ago this fucking tool said we should build a tube to shoot people around in. Then he said he had no idea how to do that, but someone should get on it. He is a press whore who comes up with two word projects. "ebay payments", "electric lotus", "people gun". Anyone who takes this guy seriously is in his target audience of brain dead sheep.
RE: Musk like Wozniak
10/24/2013 5:23:42 AM
Well, ebay payments are a near-universal standard in e-commerce, so he succeeded there.
The people gun works fine in advanced simulations, it's not made of magic. He would build it himself but he's too busy running electric lotus and tax rocket.
"If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion." -- Scientology founder L. Ron. Hubbard
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