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GM, Honda Join to Get Fuel Cell Cars On the Market

Green technology investors with long memories tend to shudder when they hear the words ‘fuel cells’ – billions of dollars have been lost over the years betting on what was once the future of sustainable transport. Anyone remember Ballard?

But the technology is back on the agenda, with GM, Honda last week announcing plans to jointly develop fuel cell technology for vehicles. They follow announcements from Toyota, Hyundai and others in the past year.

GM and Honda say they will collaborate to develop “next-generation fuel cell system and hydrogen storage technologies,” aiming for “the 2020 time frame.” Their goal is to bring down the cost of the cars and to address fueling infrastructure.

They plan is to build on each others’ technologies and share suppliers to help bring down the cost of fuel cell cars. The end result will be a common powertrain with standard components that can build toward economies of scale.

Honda has been working on the technology for a decade in its FCX Clarity – it’s three times as fuel-efficient as a conventional vehicle and twice that of a hybrid, Honda claims.
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