Honda Motor Co., Japan's second-biggest automaker, said fuel cell-powered cars will probably be mass produced by about 2015 as the
technology becomes cheaper, according to a Bloomberg News story by Kae Inoue.
"The cost of fuel cell cars needs to come down
drastically for mass production," said Honda R&D Co. Senior Chief Engineer Yozo Kami, who is in charge of developing fuel cell-powered cars, in an interview with Bloomberg News. "It costs several hundred million yen to develop a fuel cell car and the price needs to come down by a factor of a hundred to be more acceptable to customers."
Automakers are competing to develop low-pollution fuel cell systems as they vie to make their technologies dominant in the industry.
Honda, which uses Ballard Power Systems Inc.'s fuel cell stack in its FCX-V4 test vehicle, has avoided joining major technology partnerships,
choosing instead to create its own system.
Honda President Hiroyuki Yoshino said last year the company, which has made four fuel cell-powered prototype models including the FCX-V4, will introduce a production model in 2003. That
will place Honda and rival Toyota Motor Corp., Japan's two biggest automakers, among the first companies to sell fuel cell vehicles commercially.