Most major automakers have scheduled the release of an EV within the next few years. Daimler is one such company which promises us an EV soon. However, many automakers do not believe that EVs are the answer for the long term future of automobiles.
According to Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler, fuel cell powered vehicles have numerous advantages over EVs likely making them more successful in the long term. Zetsche believes that battery powered vehicles may never have the range requirements and low costs that customers are demanding. He does believe that fuel cell powered vehicles are a step ahead.
According to Zetsche, both EVs and fuel cell vehicles require an infrastructure that is not currently in place, but the fuel cell powered vehicle has already overcome range concerns and refilling concerns that have cropped up around EVs. He also believes that a fuel cell infrastructure will be in place in Europe in only a few years.
Though he admits that fuel cell vehicles may have less hurdles to overcome, Zetsche believes that since EVs and fuel cell powered vehicles share many components such as motors, electronics, and batteries, they could co-exist for years driving down the overall costs of those components due to a large volume of vehicles.
Though his view is not shared by everyone, there are several automakers who show interest in fuel cell vehicles including GM and Honda. Both companies have working fuel cell vehicles on the road that have displayed tremendous real world success.
Maybe EVs will fill a niche category in the future as hybrids do today, with fuel cell vehicles occupying the everyday driver category.
Source: Automotive News (login required)