GM predicts mass fuel-cell vehicles globally in 10 years

14 July 2009 23:05  [Source: ICIS news]

NEW YORK (ICIS news)--US automotive giant General Motors (GM) expects industry commercialisation of fuel-cell vehicles after 2018, a company official said on Tuesday.

“When you look at the development of fuel-cell vehicles industry-wide, we are probably within a 10-year journey towards a high-volume commercialisation scale,” Larry Burns, vice president of R&D and strategic planning for GM, said at a New York press conference.

“It looks like 2014 to 2015 is when you’re going to see the next generation of fuel-cell vehicles and begin to see scales in the order of 1,000 to 10,000 vehicles being built,” he added. “Third-generation vehicles could be around 2017-2018.”

GM is currently testing 115 of its Chevy Equinox fuel-cell vehicles worldwide under the company’s Project Driveway programme, Burns said. Under the programme, select costumers can drive the fuel-cell vehicles for two months.

There are about 60 of the vehicles in California and 30 in New York, Burns said.

“Over 900,000 miles have already been put on these vehicles since the programme’s inception last year in January,” said Burns.

Fuel for the cars will be provided by hydrogen-filling stations set up by oil and chemical company Shell.

Shell opened its second New York hydrogen-filling station on Tuesday, located at John F Kennedy (JFK) International Airport. The company plans to open its third New York station in the Bronx in late July.

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By: Doris de Guzman
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