Bush Abandons PNGV Program for Hydrogen Fuel-Cell

Administration has not yet determined how much it will contribute to Freedom CAR program.

Published: 10-Jan-2002

DETROIT (AP) -- Tossing aside a Clinton administration program to develop high-mileage vehicles, the Bush administration on Wednesday announced a new pact with the major automakers that focuses on accelerating the development of non-polluting vehicles powered by hydrogen fuel cells.

The new program, called Freedom Cooperative Automotive Research, also will focus on developing a hydrogen refueling infrastructure, Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham said. "The long-term results of this cooperative effort will be cars and trucks that are more efficient, cheaper to operate, pollution-free and competitive in the showroom," Abraham said during the announcement at Cobo Hall, site of the North American International Auto Show.

Freedom CAR replaces the Partnership for a New Generation Vehicle program started by the Clinton Administration to develop a vehicle that could attain 80 miles per gallon fuel efficiency. "PNGV wasn't cost-effective, and it wasn't moving a competitive automobile to the showroom," Abraham said.

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