U.K. Dept for Transport plans to deploy 4,000+ zero-emission buses over the next 5 years

The U.K. Government’s Department for Transport (DfT) has stated they are working on a 5-year, €5 billion (US$5.65 billion) plan to enhance bus and bicycle infrastructure in the country – including new routes, expanded bus lanes, more affordable fares together with deployment of at least 4,000 zero-emission buses.

Full details of the bus funding program, with its focus on improving and increasing green mobility journeys, is expected to be announced in a National Bus Strategy to be published later in 2020.

A hydrogen fuel cell passenger train has been sucessfully tested over 10-days in the Netherlands

The Coradia iLint is the world’s first hydrogen fuel cell passenger train. The Netherlands is the second country in Europe after Germany to test this train.

Aseniya Dimitrova, The Mayor »

The emissions-free solution was tested on the 65 kilometres of line between Groningen and Leeuwarden in the north of the Netherlands. This was possible thanks to a pilot agreement signed last October by Alstom and the Province of Groningen, local operator Arriva, the Dutch railway infrastructure manager ProRail and the energy company Engie.

The train has been developed and produced by Alstom teams located in Salzgitter, Germany and Tarbes, France. The technological company believes that their train, powered on hydrogen, is reliable and highly performant, just like traditional regional trains.

 

Why are hydrogen-fueled cars lagged behind their battery-electric counterparts?

Automakers continue to push into fuel-cell vehicles. But without sufficient infrastructure (fuel stations), I fear their adoption rates have little chance to catch up to battery-powered electric vehicles.

On the flip side, as more people purchase battery-powered electrical vehicles, power utilities will need to up their game and to provide power for these vehicles.

Faiz Siddiqui , Washington Post via Seattle Times »

In California, the vehicles typically come with up to $10,000 in tax savings and a $15,000 fuel card, good for about three years of free hydrogen fuel, lessening the blow of a $60,000 pricetag. Compared to typical plug-in cars that travel about 100 to 370 miles on a single charge, hydrogen-fuel-cell vehicles promise 300 to 400 miles per fill-up, similar to the highest-mileage gas-only cars.

But despite those selling points, hydrogen-fueled cars have long lagged behind their battery-electric counterparts in adoption, a gap that they appear increasingly unlikely to overcome. Although Tesla has helped drive widespread consumer adoption, along with easy ways to charge up at home and on the road, hydrogen-fueled vehicles haven’t made it past early buyers. With just 44 public fueling stations in California by January, the fleet has been persistently plagued by sparse coverage; the cars are also more expensive.

A review of U.S. Department of Energy data also showed that outside of California, the build-out of hydrogen refueling infrastructure stagnated over the past decade as electric vehicles rose. While there were 58 public and private hydrogen stations in the country in 2012, the number had grown to only 61 by the end of 2019 – as the share grew more and more concentrated in California, which doubled its network of stations over that time while states such as New York saw their hydrogen pumps close.

Read the whole article »

Washington Post Video »

Honda pulls the plug on the Clarity EV due to poor sales

2019 Honda Clarity Electric

The Clarity EV was the only fully electric vehicle Honda offered in North America.

Announced back in 2017, the Clarity lineup had been offered in three different versions—plug-in hybrid, electric, and fuel-cell. Only the EV is being discontinued, at least through the 2020 model year.

Bengt Halvorson, Green Car Reports »

American Honda Motor confirmed to Green Car Reports last week that the Clarity Electric was discontinued at the end of the 2019 model year and won’t be coming back again.

In what was a very quiet last hurrah, leases for the model, which was limited to California and Oregon, faded out at the start of the year, and then in February, while we awaited what sounded like a refreshed model in the pipeline, at least one forum pointed to indications within Honda that the model wouldn’t be returning.

[…]

At the time the Clarity Electric was introduced, Honda engineers said that they based their decision on its battery size on feedback from California drivers of the former Fit EV; but ultimately that decision may have been what doomed the model, even in California, at a time when EV shoppers are focused on cars with more than 200 miles of range, The Clarity Electric carried an EPA-rated range of 89 miles from its 25.5-kwh battery pack. It was also Honda’s first electric vehicle to use CCS-format fast charging, allowing an 80-percent charge in just 30 minutes.

More » CNet, Autoblog, Engadget, SlashGear, MotorTrend, The Detroit Bureau

City of Aberdeen, Scotland expecting 15 fuel cell double-decker buses in spring 2020

Electrive »

The buses are Wrightbus Streetdeck FCEV with FCmove-HD fuel cell systems made by Canadian company Ballard Power Systems. The fuel cell bus was developed as part of the EU-funded JIVE project. In June of last year, Everfuel, Wrightbus, Ballard Power Systems, Hexagon Composites, Nel Hydrogen and Ryse Hydrogen joined forces to form the H2Bus consortium to provide 1,000 FC buses in European cities and the necessary infrastructure at competitive prices.

The financing for the purchase of Aberdeen’s hydrogen double-decker buses comes from an £8.3million project (9.5 million euros) funded by Aberdeen City Council, the Scottish Government, and the European Union (FCH JU), with an investment of around £500,000 per vehicle.

Hyundai to decide on hydrogen fuel-cell factory location this year

Reuters »

Hyundai Motor Co (005380.KS) and its affiliates are ready to decide the location of a new hydrogen fuel-cell system factory this year, which could be in South Korea or overseas, an executive said on Wednesday.

The factory will be capable of producing more than 100,000 fuel cell systems, which include the fuel-cell stack and power control unit, annually from around 2024, Jeon Soon-il, a Hyundai Motor Group executive in its fuel cell division, said at a conference in Tokyo on Wednesday.