Fuel Cell Cars To Become Economically Viable By 2025, But EVs Are Viable Today

MAR 14 2015 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 65

Toyota FCV Rally Car

Toyota FCV Rally Car

Hyundai FCEV Prototype

Hyundai FCEV Prototype

According to Reuters, “fuel-cell technology is becoming cheaper and will be commercially viable for mass use in cars by 2025.”

Reuters says that a senior executive at auto industry supplier Robert Bosch made the claim stated above.  Reuters adds:

“By 2025 fuel cell production will be more industrialized, bringing down costs thanks to greater economies of scale, Wolf-Henning Scheider, head of Bosch’s automotive division, told an industry conference in Berlin.”

Quoting Scheider:

“They are not out of the race. They are a viable alternative to other zero-emission vehicle technologies.”

But FCEVs aren’t a viable alternative to other ZEV technologies today and will remain more costly than electric cars for at least the next decade:

“Though Scheider said that fuel-cell powertrains are still likely to be twice as expensive to produce than those for electric cars in 2025, he expects the higher operating range of fuel-cell cars to make them a viable alternative.”

Reuters closes with these statements:

“The first fuel-cell cars on the market are expected to be priced at about $70,000, but analysts say that does not cover manufacturers’ development costs, nor the expense of building filling stations at more than $1 million each.”

“Electric cars are far less expensive and can be charged at home, work or on the road, but they can travel only 100-200km (62-124 miles) on a single charge.”

It’s rather clear to us that electric is the better option, at least for the foreseeable future.  And we think the “higher operating range” of a fuel-cell car against an electric vehicle in 2025 will be negligible at best.

For fuel cells to be successful by any margin, we imagine they will have to compete strictly on a dollar-for-dollar value footing; which, at least for the moment seems unlikely.

Source: Reuters

Categories: General

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65 Comments on "Fuel Cell Cars To Become Economically Viable By 2025, But EVs Are Viable Today"

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I doubt anyone would want an FCV by that point, when the EV’s that come out in the next decade will be vastly more fun to drive and cheaper to operate.

To the vast majority of the public, they will be dead in 2 years, when the GM EV with 200 mile range comes out. And possibly the next gen Leaf.

For anyone informed they’re dead now.

We have to remember that Fuel Cell Vehicles also uses a battery and electric motors. The difference between a EV and a FCV is that a great chunk of the large battery in the EV ” is replaced” by fuel cell stacks and hydrogen tanks.

Im not against FCV (compared to fossil fuel cars), but I do think EV’s are going to have longer range still in 10-15 years when the Fuel Cell technology is cheap enough to become viable. The only aspect where and FCV has a great advantage, and probably will for decades, is the “filling up”-time.

I could however see plug-in FCEV’s as a good hybrid alternative, if the battery technology improves towards more charging cycles. Charging the car at home during the night and occasionally using hydrogen stations for longer trips. Being able to charge at home would lessen the stress on the hydrogen tanks aswell.

Since FCV stations are a $million a pop, they’ll still be few and far between in a decade. On the other hand DC fast chargers will have dropped to a couple $grand to install so will be everywhere. Anyway, it’s much faster to fill up an EV, just plug in when you get home and walk away. In a decade new EVs will have minimum 250 mile range, and you’ll almost never need public charging. FCVs will be relegated to road trip rentals or commercial long hall vehicles.

The biggest problem with fuel cells ironically is the same issue they tout is the problem with EVs, and that issue is range anxiety. No matter how much the price of the FCV drops or the price of hydrogen, it is unlikely to ever offer the same convenience. EVs can build a series of charging stations different from gas stations because 90% of charging will happen in the home. FCVs have to match the gas station model and that is a daunting task. For now you have some serious range anxiety, for you can not travel outside of “parts” of California, Germany, and Japan. I say parts, for you still have the inconvenience of getting to the fueling station. Will over 100,000 fueling stations in the US, it will be much more than a decade before you have that same fueling station on your way home from work. I have little doubt an FCV can be made economically and with decent performance. And I am sure, hydrogen can be produced economically as well, though never as cheap as solar electricity. The never ending problem is infrastructure. By the time the astronomical monies are spent on the matching infrastructure, battery technology… Read more »
With the PHEV idea (Plugin in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) you take the best factors of the new Technology (Charging at home) and combine them with the best Factors of the old Technology – Plentiful Gas Stations for long Trips. With the PHFCV (Plugin Hybrid Fuel Cell Vehicle) – you have the opportunity to simply add a single H2 Pump at Existing Gas Stations, a lot simpler and with a lot less cost for the current limited numbers of FCV’s (and early designs that use the PHFCV concepts) than going all out and putting out there specific concentrated H2 Fueling stations that can handle lots of (non-existent yet) FCV’s by having more filling Pumps than is needed at a single station! The whole argument with FCV’s is Charging/Filling Time & Charge/Fill Range, or – the time you have to interrupt your travel by to get going again, and how far between such interruptions. Tesla has already dealt with the range issue pretty well, but since they don’t have 65 Billion $ in the piggy bank – the cars are not heavily subsidized – like the Toyota Mirai, etc. The Superchargers are located and operated in a way similar to a home… Read more »

Exactly. The Volt Killed this concept 4 years ago.

Only a fool or someone extorted or bribed would continue with this product.

That is not true. Volt did not kill fuel cell cars. Henry Ford killed them already with Model T.

ICE car with synthetic fuel and emissions clean up is significantly cheaper than Fuel Cell car.

By 2025, EVs like the Leaf will be in their 3-4th generation… Way better that they are today.

*Sigh* Here we go again. FCVs, aka “fool cell” vehicles, will -never- be economically viable if they depend on hydrogen fuel. The problem isn’t the car or the fuel cell, it’s the fuel. Hydrogen is much too expensive to generate and too difficult (and therefore expensive) to store, transport, and dispense, to ever be cost-competitive with either gasoline or electricity. The reason H2 is too expensive has to do with basic physics. It would be every bit as easy to create a working perpetual motion machine as to make, store, transport, and dispense hydrogen fuel cheaply. And for the exact same reason: Basic laws of physics. Unless they’re gonna repeal the laws of physics by 2025, it will be every bit as true then as it is now. I realize that it’s quite common in Internet discussions to state opinion as fact, when often it’s not. But this isn’t merely my opinion. The laws of physics are -actually- fact. * * * * * Now, one might argue that fuel cell cars might someday be cost-competitive if they use existing fuels, rather than hydrogen. One might further argue that it’s a realistic possibility that by 2025, the technology will improve… Read more »
FCVs can be cost competitive, but I would argue only if the byproducts of NG to H conversion are discarded into the atmosphere at the pump. THis is not, by itself a bad thing, the result is an infrastructure with about the pollution generation of CNG cars. It is, however, more that that of EVs, even fed by a grid powered by NG, simply because the grid is going to have more efficient NG to power conversion as well as the ability to carbon capture. FCV is great technology. It has already failed to deliver on its promises once. Recall that the “holy grail” was a system that would crack gasoline into H and byproducts inside the car itself, with the end goal of having a car that would take current gasoline and use that. Instead, FCVs use an improved version of the FCs that powered the Apollo spacecraft some 50 years ago. Its hard to see where the window of opportunity for storied FC technology is not shrinking or closing. Cars? Shrinking faster than any conceivable deployment effort can manage. Home power? Solar cells are going up, FCs for home power are nowhere. Grid stability? hydro power storage has… Read more »

The major hurdle facing FCVs isn’t BEVs, it’s PHEVs and EREVs and REx.

The Chevy Volt solved the range anxiety and fast refill problem of BEVs, it already has the infrastructure needed, and it outperforms the FCVs handily.

The only downside is that it burns gas. But as battery technology improves we will see ever increasing AERs for PHEVs until the ICE isn’t needed.

People often say that hydrogen is the future… And always will be. But I think for passenger vehicles hydrogen was the future but got leapfrogged and now is the past.

FCVs may have a role in industrial transportation and larger vehicles. But they dont have to beat BEVs, they have to beat PHEVs

Worse; until we have the ability to create hydrogen from something other than natural gas in an economical way, it simply makes more sense to use a natural gas vehicle for heavier applications.

Nobody can predict the future 100%. But FCVs really have major headwinds and are out of the gate a decade too late.

+1 JRMV, PHEVs are the killer.
The only viable solution for fuel cells is as a PHEV range extender. The problem then is it points to the fact that electricity is the future and the lack of fuel needed to power a PHEV never justifies the build out of the infrastructure. As you stated, the PHEV ends the range anxiety argument for electricity. Hydrogen, on the other hand will suffer range confinement until they get at least a 1000 fueling stations in the US alone.

Even to target 1,000 Fueling Stations for H2, is going to be an issue, since they want to make independent, multi-Service (More than just one Pump) stations at each location, rather than a mix of such stations with others being a single H2 Pump added to existing Gas Stations!

If they could get an H2 Pump, Tank, and Compressor down to a single unit installed Price of about $100,000, they could start to compete with the single head installed price of CHAdeMO and CCS DC Quick Chargers – their “Targeted Slow Refilling/Recharging Competition!”

With such a feat – they could make availability of Hydrogen a lot easier for them, (more stops for a delivery system, though!). With today’s pay at the pump, system, even a two car wait should be just about 10 minutes before you can fill, much quicker than a two LEAF wait at a CHAdeMO site!

It would give them some leverage, while they continue to develop sales of FCV’s at their slow rate!

I agree whole-heartedly. Way too often, PHEVs are completely ignored in the FCEV vs PEV discussion. That’s why I push back against the BEV purists – PHEVs will convert more of the mainstream market.

And not to forget that petrol and diesel can be made from renewable sources as biofuel or syntetic fuel.

It will only need to cover maybe the last 10% of the energy needed and that it can do with ease.

When I owned my last diesel car the diesel fuel I filled up with was about 30% renewable.

FC technology just suffers from an especially bad case of the chicken and egg paradox. There just isn’t enough motivation to heavily invest early in H2 technology because customers won’t exist until the infrastructure and economics make sense and that can’t happen until someone invests big.

Even conventional hybrids will cost less to operate than FCEVs in passenger cars for a VERY long time. For FCEVs to even catch hybrids at cost per mile, they need cheap hydrogen and better FC stack efficiency. By the time FCEVs are cheaper to operate than hybrids, the Prius will already be exceptionally cheap to operate, and the annual savings will be minimal. Even in 50 years the FCEV will still be more expensive to purchase than the Prius.

Toyota should be targeting the commercial vehicle sector first, the way Tesla targeted the luxury car market. A 30,000 lb FCEV truck barely needs a larger FC stack than the Toyota Mirai. On board conversion of NG into H2 shouldn’t be impractical with the right tech either.

FCEVs have been “ten years from viability” for decades now.

A SOFC (Solid Oxide Fuel Cell) could be viable now as a range extender since it can use hydrocarbon fuels such as gasoline, natural gas or propane. BLOOM ENERGY http://www.bloomenergy.com/ currently has electricity ‘energy servers’ for stationary power. A 10 kW SOFC range extender would be sufficient for most BEVs and it could use the existing hydrocarbon refueling stations.

BLOOM ENERGY SOFC’s typically run on natural gas.

They are too big and heavy, which is why they are used for stationary power but not for vehicles.

The Leaf has been around for about 5 years now with no significant improvement in range. I had thought that by now range would have improved. I am now starting to think that perhaps they just can’t improve range/density any more than it is.

Right now the only way to get more range is by installing a bigger battery. In the 4 or 5 years there have been no improvement to battery range at all. We all just assume that Technology will save us by creating a better more dense battery, but there is no indication, so far, that this is going to happen.

“We all just assume that Technology will save us by creating a better more dense battery, but there is no indication, so far, that this is going to happen.”

We definitely know that better battery chemistries are coming. Carlos Ghosn has said that the Leaf will have a “better battery”. Lots of battery chemistries show promise. Lithium sulfur is a very promising chemistry. Chevrolet would not have announced that the Bolt will have a 200 mile range is LG Chem did not have the battery ready. Electric cars are the future. There is plenty of lithium for the next 20 years.

The Tesla Model S uses batteries with significantly better energy density than the ones in the Leaf.

Better batteries -are- coming; that’s why a number of auto makers have announced a nominally “200 mile” EV, hopefully to go on sale in a couple of years.

“Patience, Grasshopper.”

By 2025, solar will be so cheap that everyone will have rooftop solar. The problem then is that there will be a surplus of noontime electricity that the utilities won’t need or be able to accept or pay for. The average Joe will be use their unwanted solar electricity to makr hydrogen during the day from electrolysis and using it to refill their fuel cell cars in five minutes or less. These fuel cell cars will have 400 miles of range without the inefficiency and cost of a thousand pound battery. Even using electrilysis, a typical home solar array can provide enough juice to power a FCEV for 12K miles a year.

Home generation and compression of hydrogen would be even more massively inefficient (and thus more costly) than industrial generation and compression. Not gonna happen. Sure, sunlight is free. But solar panels aren’t. Since using hydrogen as an energy carrier is only about 25% efficient, you’ll need four times as much surface area of solar panels for your hydrogen-powered car as for charging a BEV. How large is your roof? But the cost of all those extra solar panels would be cheap compared to the cost of the hardware needed to generate, compress, store, and dispense hydrogen. As I recall, the first-generation stations they’re building right now in California cost about $2 million and can service six (6) cars per day. Of course, the cost per car will come down somewhat over time, but again you’re bumping up against the wall of the laws of physics… the inefficiency cannot be overcome, and so the cost won’t ever come down far enough to make home generation of hydrogen fuel practical. If you’re still not convinced, look at it another way: What if I argued that it would be fine if we went back to using steam engines, if the fuel was renewable?… Read more »

Honda is already working on small, home hydrogen refueling systems; see: http://www.gizmag.com/honda-solar-hydrogen-fuel-cell-refueller-electric-vehicle/14049/

Fundamentally, the reason gasoline is so popular is because it is incredibly energy dense, quick to refuel, and it’s almost free. Because of those three factors, ICEs are the standard even though they are incredibly inefficient. Hydrogen is also incredibly energy dense, quick to refuel, and by 2025 solar will be cheaper than the costs of energy storage. Thus, inefficiency will not matter for hydrogen, just as it doesn’t matter for gas today. That’s the simple truth.

Honda is also advertising “fool cell” cars for sale. Part of the same delusion and/or scam. Three Electrics said: “Hydrogen is also incredibly energy dense, quick to refuel, and by 2025 solar will be cheaper than the costs of energy storage. Thus, inefficiency will not matter for hydrogen, just as it doesn’t matter for gas today.” Wow, that’s four errors right there. 1. Even when highly compressed, hydrogen’s energy density is very low as compared to gasoline and other liquid fuels. 2. Hydrogen certainly isn’t “quick to refuel” as compared to gasoline. Filling a tank with pressurized hydrogen requires a very strong and very exacting seal, so the hookup and removal of the filling hose is much more complex and takes a lot longer than just sticking the gas hose into your car. 3. Claiming that the inefficiency of -any- fuel “doesn’t matter” is ignoring reality very firmly indeed. 4. If you really think the inefficiency of gasoline doesn’t matter, then I guess you’d have no problem pulling into a gas station advertising a price four times as high as the one down the street, right? Of course not. Nobody would. Wasting 3/4 of the energy by converting it to… Read more »
“energy density” is a loose term here: if you care about specific energy (energy per kg), hydrogen beats all. If you care about energy per liter, it’s a function of compression, and it’s easily beaten by gasoline. By both metrics hydrogen beats lithium ion handily (236 times as much energy per kg for hydrogen, 2-6 times as much energy per liter for hydrogen). For cars, weight is more important than volume. Clearly even lithium ion, which has terrible volumetric density, is good enough for a car. Mass wise, it’s another story. Regardless, I believe you are confusing cost with efficiency. Efficiency doesn’t much matter, but cost matters a great deal. The cost of solar has decreased almost 7x in the past ten years. If it continues to do so, by 2025 it will be 3x cheaper than other form of electricity. Once the cost gets low enough, there will be a noontime surplus that will cost more to store (using batteries, flywheels, or compressed air) than it does to generate. Electrolysis is dirt cheap. The efficiency of the conversion does not matter if the energy would otherwise go unused. At that threshold, solar + inefficient electrolysis is a much better… Read more »
“Three Electrics” said: “if you care about specific energy (energy per kg), hydrogen beats all.” Ah, quite true. Considering gravimetric energy density, it’s true that hydrogen fuel is superior. But for EV engineering, it’s volumetric energy density which is more important. Larger volume means the car has to be larger to hold it, and a larger car both costs and weighs more. Altho EV makers try hard to make their cars lighter, a few hundred pounds more or less doesn’t make that much difference. “Three Electrics” continued: “Electrolysis is dirt cheap.” Couldn’t be more wrong. The reason that 95% of industrially produced hydrogen is made from natural gas is because electrolysis is expensive. On the basis of EROI — Energy Return On Investment — electrolysis will always lose in competition with either gasoline/diesel or electricity. As I explained, you lose about 75% of the energy invested in making, compressing, moving, storing, and dispensing the hydrogen fuel. 75% lost just to make it and get it into the car. Again, future tech advances won’t change that. Even if the electricity used for electrolysis was free, the other expenses — the equipment needed for electrolysis, plus all the equipment, trouble and expense… Read more »

“Fundamentally, the reason gasoline is so popular is because it is incredibly energy dense, quick to refuel, and it’s almost free”

Well, it was at one time. Taking it out of the ground was equivalent to sticking a soda straw in an orange, then it was half burned in a car and sent into the atmosphere. It is then recycled back into the ground by plants again. Its just a little too bad that plants take a billion years to do that last part, a real shame.

No since those heady days of the 1900s, things have got dramatically better:

* They learned how to crack diesel fuel into gas at the refinery (at a cost of lots more energy lost).

* They made strides in cleaning up car pollution like emission controls and catalytic converters.

Now gasoline is not a cheap fuel anymore. Perhaps if we went retrograde and went back to 1900s style cars, about as simple as a sewing machine. But go to shanghai if you want to find out way that is not a good idea.

“The average Joe will be use their unwanted solar electricity to make hydrogen during the day from electrolysis and using it to refill their fuel cell cars in five minutes or less.” the 5 Minute fueling will need compressors with the capability of 450 Bar, for the Tucson FCV, maybe higher for the Mirai.

Vancouver BC Fueled their H2/FCV Winter Olympics Buses on stations at just 250 Bar, and there is just one Station that can do the 450 Bar in Vancouver, so that means – just one place to get a ‘Full’ Tank for the Tucson FCV, and since you can’t trickle hydrogen into a tank, you have to pump the Heck out of it to get enough for the range.

So – Fueling at home on H2 – is unlikely to give you the 5,000 PSI or the 10,000 PSI (Toyota Mirai) pressures to get 5 minutes fueling and Full Tanks.

Just Sayin’. You might easily be able to make the H2, but the Compression is the challenge!

That hydrogen bus program was cancelled by the city because it was too cost ineffective. They’re looking to sell their hydrogen buses now, but since theyre probably not going to find any takers at a reasonable price, they’ll likely be converting them to diesel buses.

“…The average Joe will want their unused Solar Power turned into Hydrogen…”

This average joe has no unwanted Solar Power. I want all of it, even that which I sell back to the utility. I don’t throw it out I let my neighbors use it.

Boy, that FCV rally car certainly looks like they put lipstick on a pig..

I like his tone. However, two corrections:
-Greater than “124 mile” EVs already exist
-hydrogen stations are budgeted at closer to 2mm, than “1mm”.

” regional hydrogen infrastructure investments
totaling $100-200 million spent over perhaps 5-7 years in support of 100 stations”
I like his tone. Two corrections, however, are that we have >”123 mile” EVs already, and the hydrogen stations don’t cost 1mm. They cost 2mm each:

“..regional hydrogen infrastructure investments totaling $100-200 million spent over perhaps 5-7 years in support of 100 stations”
http://policyinstitute.ucdavis.edu/files/NextSTEPS-White-Paper-Hydrogen-Transition-7.28.14.pdf

..sorry for the over-paste.

Gigafactories cost five billion dollars. Two million dollars per station isn’t much if each station can service a thousand or more cars a month. Hell, modern gas stations cost several hundred thousand dollars. The Gigafactory will cost thousands per car battery produced in capital costs alone.

It’s all really moot, though: at this stage investments in both EV and FC infrastructures are a pittance of American GDP.

It’s reported the first public hydrogen fueling station in California which actually uses “green” fuel — that is, it’s not made by using up fossil fuel (natural gas) as 95% of commercially produced hydrogen is — can fuel about six (6) cars per day, and yes it cost $2 million to build. That’s 180 cars per month.

By comparison, the ratio of gas stations to cars in the USA is about 1250 to 1. To replace all those with hydrogen stations would require how many? I presume as more H2 stations are built they’ll be able to service more than 6 cars per day, but obviously they’ll never be within an order of magnitude of filling as many “fool cell” cars. And each one built at a cost of about $1 million apiece, considerably higher than the average cost of a gas station.

Eventually, Three Electrics, even -you- will have to recognize the reality that hydrogen fuel is impossibly impractical for anything other than rocketships.

“Eventually, Three Electrics, even -you- will have to recognize the reality that hydrogen fuel is impossibly impractical for anything other than rocketships.”

It actually is not a very practical rocket fuel either. Apollo used kerosone/oxygen for the first (biggest) stage, as does the spacex falcon rocket. The economics are simple. You can liquify air and fraction the oxygen, but separating H from other fuels is not as cost effective as just burning a parent fuel.

The Gigafactory is not a charger manufacturing plant, i.e. it’s not equivalent to the hydrogen pump. The Gigafactory is a battery manufacturing plant, equivalent to a fuel cell manufacturing plant. While I think that the cost of _building_ the hydrogen refueling infrastructure is a bit of a red herring, given the amount of money that would need to be spent to allow every car to be a BEV, there are huge unanswered questions over the costs of the fuel and the cost of maintaining the infrastructure (including in the cars). Plug-ins do not have that problem. The Gigafactory not only would make batteries for cars, it would also make batteries for static storage. Cheap static storage would help make the grid better and electricity cheaper. That’s on top of the fact that plug-ins would almost entirely be using spare production and transmission capacity. The advances that would bring down costs and make large numbers of plug-ins possible would, at the same time, bring down costs of the supporting infrastructure, make it more reliable and more sustainable. The potential synergies are huge. Of further importance is that the ability to refuel at home, and the availability of PHEVs means that the… Read more »

If these companies took the money they’re wasting on Fuel Cell Vehicle development and put it towards DC fast charging we’d be able to charge 300mi range BEVs in 5 minutes by 2025.

My fundamental takeaway: at today’s prices, the amount spent on one Gigafactory would be sufficient to build between 2500 and 5000 fuel cell refueling stations, and the cost only goes down from there.

Since you reference the Gigafactory cost at 5 Billion $, why not reference that Toyota alone has 65 Billion $ IN CASH – so why does Toyota (The Great FCV Believer) Put THEIR Money out there – and get those 2500+ H2 Fueling stations Build out over the next couple years? Hyundai, Mercedes, and other FCV Proponents could chip in too!

Simple – they want YOU – The Tax Payer to foot the bill, like it or not, unlike Tesla – Building a Factory for Batteries for all their cars, + for Home Energy Storage, and more, with their own, and related Investors money – the people who believe it will be profitable for them to invest, and have a choice to do so!

Dude, Tesla is getting plenty of taxpayer subsidies to build its Gigafactory in Nevada. Tesla was very adept at getting a bunch of states to compete and outbid eachother in offering Tesla generous taxpayer subsidies for the priveledge of choosing their state as the location of its Gigafactory. Nevada won.

“Subsidy: a grant by a government to a private person or company to assist an enterprise deemed advantageous to the public” Correct me if I’m wrong, but Nevada isn’t giving Tesla one red cent of grant money. They’re just giving them a tax abatement for 10-20 years. The most you can say that Nevada is “giving” Tesla is building some access roads and utility hookups for their plant. The economic stimulus from construction and job creation in the area, including new housing for those taking permanent jobs there, will certainly generate a lot of tax revenue for Nevada. The idea that somehow the Gigafactory is going to be a burden on Nevada taxpayers… couldn’t possibly be more wrong. The true situation is precisely the opposite. There have been a lot of bad deals made by State legislatures trying to attract large businesses. This doesn’t appear to be one of those. Nevada’s contract with Tesla specifies jobs must actually be created, and that they must be long-term jobs. The amount of tax abatement Tesla gets is pro-rated by the number of jobs it actually creates and maintains over the next decade or two. If the jobs don’t appear as Tesla has… Read more »

Its very true, Harry reid figures that just getting more employees into nevada will result in plenty of money from the gambling and prostitution industries. There is nothing else to do in Nevada.

Lensman said: “Correct me if I’m wrong, but Nevada isn’t giving Tesla one red cent of grant money.” You are wrong. After getting $1.1 billion in tax abatements (20yrs on sales tax on equipment and construction materials, 10yrs on property taxes, and 10 years on payroll taxes), Tesla suddenly demanded that the state pay it $500 million is cash upfront!!! All the states Tesla was negotiating with balked. Here is what Nevada offered to give Tesla in lieu of $500 million cash that it wanted in addition to $1.1 billion in tax abatements. Nevada gave Tesla the following: – $195 million in transferable tax credits, which Telsa could then sell immediately; – $8 million in electricity discounts; – $43 million in 980 acres of free land, a right of way easement on adjoining land to build a four-lane build, and the construction expense of leveling the gigafactory construction site; – $70 million in building a four lane road from the gigafactory to U.S. Route 50. That adds up to $316 million in taxpayer subsidies upfront, instead of the $500 million cash upfront that Tesla demanded. Therefore, 23% of the $1.4 billion incentive package is taxpayer subsidies. You can read all… Read more »

FCV will be used for the the tractor trailers and large vehicles where hauling around a huge battery makes little sense.

EVs will not be suitable for large trucks beyond short-range city applications.

Tractor-trailer rigs are in desperate need of a fuel that’s -cheaper- than diesel, such as natural gas. Not a fuel that’s several times as expensive, like hydrogen.

Cheaper fuel for transportation equals cheaper transportation costs equals cheaper prices for manufactured goods, equals the real buying power of the dollar going up.

Replacing diesel with H2 would have exactly the opposite effect, increasing prices of almost everything, causing inflation, and making everyone poorer by reducing the buying power of the dollar.

Why is it impractical for trucks? because they need bigger batteries? THose guys are used to spending $1000 on a fillup. Everything scales up for trucks. They would love to save pennies per gallon. An EV truck would save much more than the cost of the battery.

The issue is time. They need to charge in less than 15 minutes. And that is one big ass charger.

Resistance is futile.

I don’t think range will be an obstacle for EVs in 10 years so FCEVs won’t be competititve.

Trust battery capacity will increase x fold – while cost goes down and we can put
fuel cells for automotive use in museums where they belong.

Without a mature FCV market, there is no path towards independence from oil.

Put flatly, there is no foreseeable path to BEV viability for a) those who cannot charge at home or b) long-distance trucking.

Until BEVs can refuel as quickly as petroleum-fueled cars, they will not replace them. FCVs can already refuel at petroleum speed.

I refueled my BEV in less than one minute last night. I just plugged it in and left it.

Those “johnny home gas stations” aren’t making progress, are they?

Did you charge at home?

Because if so, you have already excluded yourself from the category of “people who cannot charge at home.”

Why wouldn’t people be able to charge at home? The more common EVs become the more options there will be for home charging. There will be charging opportunities even if you just park your car on the street, eventually.

If you aren’t a homeowner, the prospect of charging at home is daunting. Setting aside the apartment complex owners and condo HOAs that are openly hostile towards installing EVSEs, the question of “who will pay for this?”, to this point, has only been answered with vague references about rental perks. But that’s a Catch 22: complex owners don’t want to mass-install EVSEs until there is high enough EV market saturation (among renters) for it to be a legitimate market advantage, but you’ll never get that kind of saturation without available EVSEs. And doing a large-scale EVSE installation prior to that point just raises your rent above your competition… which, when the majority of your tenants are still on ICE, is increased cost for no value. As far as curbside installation goes, who is paying for that… the city? It doesn’t seem to me that there is any other plausible benefactor, and the prospect of installing metered EVSEs along the sidewalks of every residential area, city by city, is daunting to say the least. The above are the reasons why FCVs are being pushed. BEVs are great if you are a homeowner, and within the next 5 years they will permanently… Read more »

This whole 300mi/5min refueling thing is a red herring for 1/2 of all drivers in my neighborhood. They only drive 10mi per trip (charge) today. Why do they need a car capable of cross-country driving when all they do is putter around in a 25mi circle?

At 82 years of age,we are running our 3rd PRIUS, this one a plug-in.It is our 5th Toyota.There are 3 other Toyotas in the immediate family.Because of our foresight (luck?), we charge it on FREE electricity we have been PAID to generate,from solarpanels &the innovative Baxi’Ecogen’gas c/htg boiler.Admitttedly, at our age,it has travelled less than 7,000 miles in 2+years from new,mostly on local runs.It has visited the pump in March 2014&in February 2015 for about 6+(UK)gallons(weight!), & on BOTH occasions had several gallons left in the tank from the previous visit. This means it is returning well over 200 mp(UK)g.Just as well, as petrol attracts a high rate of tax in the UK.Leaving aside our age,why would we want an FCV???Why cant we have a BEV,like a BEV RAV4 (never been retailed UK)WITH THE RANGE OF A TESLA????

One simple question…

Who is going to build the infrastructure?

Without that, there’s no way they can be “economically viable”.

Energy companies will build the infrastructure and sell the hydrogen. It should be easy, as they are already in the business of selling fuel.

Now, reversal is fair play: who will install EVSEs for nightly charging of all the BEVs parked streetside and in apartment parking lots? No matter what answer you give, it almost certainly will not be “the utility companies selling the electricity being provided.” And that’s a problem.

So if the problem of the day is, “who is going to pay for the refueling infrastructure?” FCVs have a more sensible answer than BEVs do: the people who pay for it will be the people who make money off selling the fuel that comes through it.

I don’t think a Reuters quote from a single source is worthy of an article by itself… It’s not like the guy actually tries to justify his popsition, and, in fact, as you note, all the numbers he does mention actually work against him.

Why a million for a station? How much does it cost to sink a tank underground? Or even bolt one above ground?