South Korea and Hyundai raised the bar for hydrogen fuel cell cars in 2019.

The hydrogen fuel cell path to zero-emission cars does not convince us, but we often take a look at FCV sales to see whether there is any progress.

In the U.S., there was no progress in 2019, but according to the EV Sales Blog, the global result is an all-time high of over 7,500 units (90% more than a year earlier).

That's a level better than plug-in car sales... in 2010. If you think it's too little too late, you are welcome to the club.

The bulk of the result comes from a single model - the Hyundai NEXO, which with 4,818 (87% in South Korea) overshadows Japanese FCVs like Toyota Mirai (2,407, over 200 less than in the record year 2017) and Honda Clarity Fuel Cell (349).

With expected progress from Hyundai and the 2nd model evolution of the Toyota Mirai, in 2020 FCVs should hit a five-digit result for the very first time, but it's still not much.

Moreover, the key roadblocks remain:

  • high vehicle price and refueling price
  • no refueling infrastructure beside few markets
  • low overall energy efficiency

Source: EV Sales Blog