Fuel Cell Car Plans Gear Up! GM and Honda Talk Fuel Cell Vehicles

July 4, 2013, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Though fuel cell vehicles are considered the best solution in the world’s bid to reduce oil dependency, cost of production of such vehicles and the lack of hydrogen refueling stations have turned many automakers towards other alternatives like hybrids and battery-electric vehicles.

But, as we hear now, these challenges have never reduced the enthusiasm of automakers like GM and Honda; they are still furthering fuel cell development.

Both the majors are said to be still working on fuel cell vehicles and they have now teamed up to make cheaper fuel cell vehicles by 2020. Together, Honda and GM hold around 1,200 patents in fuel cell technology!

By way of this collaboration, they hope to reduce the cost of production of fuel cell vehicles by sharing their research data.


Honda and GM together announced this long-term agreement at a press conference in New York a day ago. At the event, Tetsuo Iwamura, president of American Honda Motors, said that GM has great knowledge in chemical reactions and advanced materials.

On the other hand at Honda they were experts in the structural design and advanced production process technologies of the fuel cell. And together, both can develop the best fuel cell technology. They also have plans to relate with governments and other stakeholders to develop a new hydrogen refueling infrastructure, he has been quoted as saying.

According to GM Chief Executive Officer Dan Akerson, fuel cell vehicles can help to reduce petroleum dependence and will help to attain sustainable mobility.

In fuel cell technology, electricity is produced by the chemical reaction between hydrogen and oxygen stored in the car’s fuel cell tank. During the reaction, water vapor is the only emitted product.

Though it is a real solution to attain sustainable transport, the manufacturing cost of fuel cell vehicles is very high.  It requires high quantities of precious platinum material as catalyst and expensive carbon fiber storage tanks to store hydrogen.

Both GM and Honda boast long experience in the fuel cell vehicles. They have greater plans in the field of fuel cell vehicles. Honda has already announced its plans to launch the successor of FCX Clarity, which was named the 2009 World Green Car by the end of 2015. On the other hand, GM is yet to announce its fuel cell production plans.

It is clear that fuel cell technology has a definitive advantage over other Zero CO2 emission technologies. It can reduce our long petroleum dependency as well as CO2 emission.

Moreover,  fuel cell technology is more efficient and even can operate on renewable hydrogen. That means, you can use renewable sources like wind and biomass to make hydrogen.

It is said that fuel cell vehicles can be re-fueled in less than three minutes and such vehicles can offer up to 400 miles driving range.

Don’t you guys think this is one great move by the auto majors? We do.

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