Fed up of being fleeced every time you take your car for a fill-up? Honda reckons it has the answer with its latest hydrogen-powered vehicle, the FCV.
Seen here in concept form, the Japanese brand has confirmed the new model will go on sale in 2016, first in its domestic market, and later in the US and Europe.
While Japanese marques in particular have been championing hybrid and battery electric technology as an alternative to conventional internal combustion, a growing number are turning their attention to hydrogen power as the global infrastructure for the fuel strengthens.
Hydrogen cars are powered by electricity, which is generated on board as the gas is combined with air in an on-board generator. The only by-product from the process is water.
The FCV’s electric motor develops 134bhp, and the car should have a range of around 300 miles between hydrogen fill-ups, which takes between three and five minutes.
This isn’t a flight of fancy for Honda. The brand has even gone as far as to open its own hydrogen filling station at its manufacturing facility in Swindon. Capable of producing around 20 tonnes of hydrogen each year, the solar-powered station is aimed at kicking off further development of the hydrogen infrastructure in the UK.
This isn’t the first Honda to be powered by hydrogen. The manufacturer previously launched the FCX Clarity in 2008, which was made available solely to Californian buyers – then the only place with a hydrogen fuel network developed enough to support private vehicles.
The FCV is likely to face stiff competition when it arrives, as rival Japanese marque Toyota has also unveiled a production-ready hydrogen vehicle in the form of the new Mirai, which arrives in European showrooms next summer. Korean carmaker Hyundai is also throwing its hat into the ring with a hydrogen-powered version of its ix35 SUV.
Would you consider hydrogen power in your next car? Have your say in the comments section below.
November 18, 2014