GM fuel cell powered vehicles set records

General Motors set a number of international records for vehicles powered by fuel cells in a 24-hour endurance run at the company’s desert proving grounds, exposing the vehicle to record heat in the process. Using a modified Opel Zafira, a minivan GM sells in Europe and other international markets, test engineers and journalists covered 862 miles, averaging 36 miles per hour. The vehicle, dubbed the “HydroGen1,” is the first fuel cell vehicle to cover more than 500 miles in one day and to be driven in 100 degree Fahrenheit heat, according to GM test engineers. “The vehicle held up tremendously well, especially considering the 100-degree heat,” said lead researcher Udo Winter. “I think a pollution-free, fuel cell powered vehicle will be commercially viable within a decade. Fuel cell vehicles create electricity from hydrogen and oxygen, produce no emissions except for water vapour, double the fuel economy and can cover more than 250 miles on one tank of fuel. GM engineers are conducting approximately 150 tests at thirteen sites on five continents in the development of the HydroGen1.