DaimlerChrysler Launches FCV Program in Japan

March 10, 2003 by Jeff Shepard

DaimlerChrysler Corp. (Auburn Hills, MI) joined forces with energy-supply companies and other manufacturers in the opening of the first Japanese fuel cell testing facility in the Japan Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Demonstration Project. The facility will provide a location for companies to conduct fuel cell vehicle (FCV) testing as well as infrastructure development.

The Japan Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Demonstration Project, which is subsidized by the Japanese government, is meant to bring fuel cell technology to market maturity by fostering close cooperation between the vehicle manufacturers, energy-supply companies and government authorities. DaimlerChrysler will be involved in this test program with its Mercedes-Benz F-Cell, a fuel-cell-powered A-Class. The F-Cell vehicles represent the first of 60 that will be driven and tested by customers in everyday conditions in select world markets, including the US.

"The Japanese demonstration project represents a significant milestone towards the use of hydrogen as an energy source for the future," said Andreas Truckenbrodt, who is responsible for alternative powertrain and fuel cell technology at DaimlerChrysler. "We welcome this initiative of the Japanese government, because we believe that this technology can only be effectively promoted through close cooperation between the automotive manufacturers and the energy supply sector."