Pretty much most of the world’s large automakers plan a commercial launch of fuel cell vehicles in 2015, Hyundai even earlier. One of the hot spots could be Scandinavia. At the end of a month-long hydrogen-powered tour through Europe, Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Hyundai signed an agreement to jointly promote fuel cell vehicles in Norway, Sweden, Iceland and Denmark.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) provides mostly for moral and promotional support and is hoped to be “a catalyst to begin a dialogue between public and private stakeholders in Norway, Sweden, Iceland and Denmark on securing relevant financing and support mechanisms for accelerating market introduction of FCEVs.” What is interesting is that the three Japanese majors are doing something together, and that they are bringing the Korean juggernaut Hyundai on board.
Japanese makers have big hopes for fuel cell technology. Mitsuhiro Ueno, head of Honda R&D Europe called the fuel cell vehicle “the ultimate green mobility.” FCVs don’t have the drawbacks of pure EVs, namely limited range and long charge time. What is holding them back are price and infrastructure.