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Honda's Fuel Cell Concept Vehicle Makes
its European Driving Debut
Honda's next-generation FCX Concept
fuel cell vehicle made its European driving debut at the Gotland
Ring in Sweden today. The vehicle is highly efficient, with an
energy efficiency of around 60 percent; approximately three
times that of a petrol-engine vehicle, twice that of a hybrid
vehicle and 10 percent better than the current FCX.
The Honda FCX presented at the Tokyo Auto Show 2005
The FCX Concept is a key stage in
Honda's development of fuel cell technology and will be the
basis for a totally new fuel cell vehicle which the company is
currently developing. Limited marketing of this new vehicle is
on target to begin in 2008 in Japan and the U.S. and the focus
will be to deliver a new dimension in environmentally friendly
driving pleasure not found with petrol-engine vehicles.
To meet Honda's objectives for
significant gains in both environmental and driving performance,
the FCX Concept is equipped with a V Flow fuel cell platform. In
previous fuel cell stacks the hydrogen and the water formed in
electricity generation flowed horizontally, this vehicle
features a vertical-flow design. This allows gravity to assist
in discharging the water that is produced, resulting in a major
improvement in water drainage - key to high-efficiency fuel
stack performance - and achieving a higher output from a smaller
This new fuel cell stack is 20 percent smaller
and 30 percent lighter than the current FCX FC Stack, yet its power
output is 14kW greater. The drive motor has been positioned coaxially
with the gearbox for a more compact design, with output increased by
15kW. Overall, the power plant is about 180kg lighter than that of the
current FCX and about 40 percent smaller in volume.
The V Flow fuel cell platform also has allowed
the designers to create an elegant, low-riding, sedan form that would
have been difficult to achieve in a conventional fuel cell vehicle. The
result is improved energy efficiency and performance along with a more
Low-temperature startup has also been
significantly improved, enabling cold-weather starts at temperatures
10˚C lower than the current FCX- as low as minus 30˚C.
As an auxiliary power source, the FCX Concept
carries a compact, high-efficiency lithium ion battery, contributing to
increased power output and a more compact power plant. These efficiency
improvements to major power plant components give the vehicle a travel
range approximately 30 percent greater than the current FCX.
The comfortably large cabin complete with
futuristic styling also includes seat upholstery and door linings made
from Honda Bio-Fabric, a plant-based material that offers outstanding
durability and resistance to sunlight damage.
(June 25, 2007)