DaimlerChrysler Increases Fuel-Cell Vehicle Presence in California
– DaimlerChrysler announced on June 1 the delivery of two fuel-cell vehicles to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (Air District). The government agency will place the DaimlerChrysler F-Cells in daily use.These are among the first fuel-cell vehicles delivered since the official kickoff of the Department of Energy (DOE) Hydrogen Learning Demonstration Project. The use of the F-Cells will enable DaimlerChrysler and the Air District to gain additional experience with fuel-cell vehicles. By operating in California, DaimlerChrysler will receive data on variables that may affect future vehicle design. The two F-Cells bear Air District's commitment toward California's Hydrogen Highway program. Part of a 100-plus-vehicle fuel-cell fleet that DaimlerChrysler has put into service around the world, these two F- Cells also will contribute to the DOE Hydrogen Learning Demonstration Project.The DaimlerChrysler fuel-cell system is housed in the floor of the vehicle, leaving full use of the passenger and cargo spaces. It has a range of approximately 100 miles and a top speed of 85 mph. The electric motor develops 88 hp (65 kW), enabling acceleration from 0 to 60 mph in 16 seconds. The stack has been developed by the DaimlerChrysler cooperation partner, Ballard Power Systems.Through the DOE Controlled Hydrogen Fleet and Infrastructure Demonstration and Validation Project, DaimlerChrysler will place more fuel-cell vehicles in the hands of customers who will provide feedback about performance in different conditions. DaimlerChrysler is testing more than 100 fuel-cell vehicles under varying weather, traffic conditions, and driving styles in different locations worldwide. This experience will benefit the development of the fuel-cell automobile and how it will be refueled. BP Energy is partnered with DaimlerChrysler in the project. BP recently opened the first public hydrogen refueling station in Southfield, Mich., with DTE Energy Company. Another station was opened in a cooperative effort between BP and Praxair at the Los Angeles International Airport.