F-Cell World Drive Highlights Lack of Infrastructure
Other carmakers, who base their electric vehicles on other types of drive trains, like Daimler, are at a bit of a disadvantage. Using a system which takes advantage of the chemical reaction between oxygen and hydrogen might be a better idea that a battery-powered EV, but, as the car maker found out, not in the near future.
Currently, a fleet of three B-Klasse F-Cell models are trekking across the US, as part of the World Drive tour meant to advertise this means of propulsion. As impressed as the people who came across the cars were, as worried Daimler emerged from the whole experience.
According to the automaker, although the US might be considered a heaven for electric vehicles as far as charging infrastructure goes, there's still a lot of ground to cover when it comes to the availability of hydrogen fueling stations.
By the time the US tour will end, on March 18, the three models would have refueled 35 times on the route from Miami to Seattle. Only one time, however, the refueling was made at a public hydrogen station, located in the Greater Los Angeles Area. (The rest of the hydrogen will come from tour partner Linde).
"The American market is already active in the field of fuel cell technology, but like in Europe, there is still a need for development when it comes to infrastructure,” said Thomas Weber, Daimler member of the board for Group Research and Development
“Together with our regional partners, we want to point out the potentials of this technology and to get important lead markets ready for the rollout of a high number of electric vehicles with fuel cell technology."