While GM and Honda are positioned at the head of the (currently nonexistent) fuel cell market, Volkswagon is moving to get in on the game as well. Their high-temperature fuel cell is (according to VW) cheaper to produce and more efficient than GM or Honda's stacks.
The vehicle in question is the Space Up! Blue...which is obviously the name of a concept car that's going to be hitting the market very soon! Er...maybe not. But it's an interesting concept nonetheless. Following in the footsteps of Ford's Airstream, the car will run for the first 65 miles on energy stored (from the grid) in a series of lithium ion batteries. The fuel cell then creates energy from the hydrogen, recharging the batteries, giving a vehicle with full hydrogen tanks and charged batteries a range of 220 miles.
And, of course, since it's a concept, VW has added in a rooftop solar panel. Somehow that feature never seems to make it into production modles... I'm looking at the car right now (thank you free VW WIFI) and it seems to be quite a hit. Compact but spacious...exactly what we've come to hope for from fuel cell cars. And, of course, if the technology pans out, VW could make a killing just licensing. Once again...only if there will someday be a good hydrogen distribution system on this planet.
written by Richard, November 14, 2007
written by Marriage Family, March 19, 2008
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