Team efforts to bring hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to market have gone truly worldwide. An announcement today from Daimler, Ford, and Nissan reveals that the three companies are going to work together on a “common fuel cell system” that should “speed up availability” of H2 vehicles at lower costs. The target is 2017, which is two years later than fuel cell vehicles should be arriving from Toyota, Hyundai and, yes, Nissan. Still, the positive spin on today’s announcement is that the collaboration should “lead to launch of world’s first affordable, mass-market fuel cell electric vehicles.” We shall see. After all, the long-running joke is that hydrogen is the fuel of tomorrow, and always will be – the press release even notes that “together, Daimler, Ford and Nissan have more than 60 years of cumulative experience developing FCEVs [fuel cell electric vehicles].”
Still, among the three companies involved in the deal, Daimler has the most advanced (public) hydrogen fuel cell vehicle program, sending out lots of F-Cell vehicles for pilot programs as well as testing H2 technologies in things like buses for Davos delegates.
The agreement announced today involves both sharing technology, as well as “help[ing to] define global specifications and component standards.” The shared tech will be a fuel cell stack, fuel cell system and “other FCEV components” that each company could use in its own vehicles.