Ballard Power Systems Inc., which has for years poured millions of dollars into developing fuel-cell technology that would replace the internal combustion engine, now is in talks with Daimler AG and Ford Motor Co. for that part of its business, according to ReportonBusiness.The Vancouver-based company cites the "lengthy projected timeline to commercialization and high cost of development," but would not comment further. Ballard was one of the first companies to champion fuel cells, which generate electricity by combining hydrogen fuel and oxygen, as a practical source of energy. The only by-products are water and heat. But efforts to turn prototypes into affordable products proved costly and time consuming, disappointing starry-eyed investors and forcing the company to look for shorter routes to market. According to ReportonBusiness, Ford already owns about 11 per cent of Ballard, and Daimler about 19 per cent.