Toyota, GM: Hydrogen fuels cells are not viable
March 5, 2008
Executives from General Motors Corp. and Toyota Motor cast doubts yesterday about the viability of hydrogen fuel cells for mass-market production in the near term, reports The Wall Street Journal. The executives said electric cars will be a better way to cut emissions and improve fuel efficiency.
Speaking at the Geneva auto show, GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz told reporters that advances in lithium-ion batteries will enable electric cars to drive up to 300 miles without recharging, making them more attractive to the mass market. He added that fuel cells are too expensive for mainstream use.
“If we get lithium-ion to 300 miles, then you need to ask yourself, Why do you need fuel cells?” Lutz was quoted as saying. “We are nowhere [near] where we need to be on the costs curve” for fuel-cell vehicles.
Separately Toyota President Katsuaki Watanabe echoed the sentiment, saying that costs for fuel cells remain high and the infrastructure needed to distribute hydrogen is not in place.
GM, Toyota Doubtful on Fuel Cells’ Mass Use By EDWARD TAYLOR and MIKE SPECTOR. The Wall Street Journal. March 5, 2008