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Daimler Chief Sees Fuel Cell Cars A Decade Away

CEO Dieter Zetsche sees more promise in early deployment of autonomous driving vehicles than fuel cell cars.

Published: 16-Jan-2014

Daimler AG Chief Executive Officer Dieter Zetsche said during a round table meeting with reporters at the North American International Auto Show that drivers looking to jump into their fuel cell-powered car or truck to run errands are going to have to live with disappointment for at least a decade.

Last year, Ford, Nissan and Daimler established a three-way partnership to accelerate the development of fuel cell electric vehicle technology, with the ultimate goal of releasing a ready for market fuel cell vehicle by 2017.

“There are cost problems with the industrial process for making fuel cells,” he told reporters during the session. “That’s why we are working with Ford and Nissan to take out the cost. But it’s a (chicken) and egg question. You need volume to drive down the costs. There are also issues with the infrastructure,” he said, noting that the hydrogen fueling stations necessary for fuel cells are still few and a far between.

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