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Honda To Debut Hydrogen Fuel-cell Car In 2008
05-11-2007, 01:37 PM,
#1
Honda To Debut Hydrogen Fuel-cell Car In 2008
Honda to debut hydrogen fuel-cell car in 2008
El Reg

Honda yesterday laid out its future green motoring technology strategy for the world's media with announcements and demonstrations in Washington DC.

The only piece of mainstream kit in the near future will be a new hybrid car, to go on sale in the USA within two years priced below the current Honda Civic hybrid variant, which goes for $25,000. The Civic hybrid hasn't achieved sales to match Toyota's groundbreaking Prius: Honda believes this may be because it doesn't look visibly different to the ordinary Civic. The theory is that green motorists like to be seen to be green, and to that end the new hybrid will have unique styling.
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Hybrid cars still derive their power from burning conventional fuel, though they get by on less than conventional motors. They don't reduce carbon emissions or dependence on overseas oil supplies in any radical way, though they do achieve impressive reductions in urban air pollution.

But Honda, in common with some other big manufacturers, is looking beyond the hydrocarbon/carbohydrate era. The firm aspires in the longer term to offer mass-market vehicles which run on hydrogen. Honda's chosen route to this goal is fuel-cell technology, in which hydrogen and atmospheric oxygen become waste water and electric power. The power output is typically quite low, but a lithium-ion battery allows a vehicle to accelerate and climb hills by storing unused energy from braking, coasting, and periods sitting still - much as a hybrid does today.

Honda has had FCX fuel-cell demonstrator cars on American roads for some years now. There are currently about 20 in operation, mostly run by organisation fleets, but two are leased by individuals at $500/month. This is a loss-leader and publicity effort by Honda; the cars currently cost far too much for such a deal to make money. One of the private drivers is teenage actress Q'orianka Kilcher, noted for her turn as Pocahontas opposite Colin Farrell in the 2005 flick The New World.

However, Honda now intends to put a third-generation FCX into low-rate production from 2008 and lease it to an unspecified number of individuals in the US and Japan ("many, many more", apparently). The new FCX will be roomier, as the power plant and battery have been reduced in size. It will also feature "seat upholstery and door linings made from Honda Bio Fabric, a plant-based material that offers outstanding durability and resistance to sunlight damage".

The big snag for FCX drivers will be filling up with hydrogen. There is only one hydrogen station in DC and a handful more in California. With the FCX predicted to achieve no more than 270 miles on a tank of hydrogen, that could limit the customer base and usefulness. However, Honda says it is working with Shell, Chevron, and BP on this. Furthermore, the firm intends to produce a "home energy centre" which will use domestic natural gas to produce both hydrogen for the car and electricity to supplement the domestic mains supply. This won't be ready in time for the new FCX launch, though.
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&I've come to the conclusion, after having spent many years in politics, is that our presidential elections turn out to be more of a charade than anything else, and I think that is true today. It is a charade,& - Ron Paul, Sept 2008.
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We're in a lot of trouble, watch this - http://www.youtube.com/v/3L3QVn4JyYA
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You cannot tax someone's labor because that is slavery
- Ed Brown, June 18 2007
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The world's &freeest& country has the highest number in prison.
- arundhati roy
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The crisis of modern democracy is a profound one. Free elections, a free press and an independent judiciary mean little when the free market has reduced them to commodities available on sale to the highest bidder.
- arundhati roy
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The era of manufacturing consent has given way to the era of manufacturing news. Soon media newsrooms will drop the pretense, and start hiring theater directors instead of journalists.
- arundhati roy
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The structure of capitalism is flawed. The motor that powers it cannot but vastly increase the disparity between the poor and the rich globally and within countries as well. Parecon is a brave argument for replacing that flawed machine and offers a much needed -- more equitable, democratic, participatory -- alternative economic vision.
- arundhati roy
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[The choice between John Kerry and George Bush] is not a real choice. It's an apparent choice. Like choosing a brand of detergent. Whether you buy Ivory Snow or Tide, they're both owned by Proctor & Gamble.
- arundhati roy
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No government's condemnation of terrorism is credible if it cannot show itself to be open to change by nonviolent dissent
- arundhati roy
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Dr. Hermann Oberth who pioneered rocket design for the German Reich during World War II and later advanced rocket technology for the American manned space launches, cryptically stated: "We cannot take the credit for our record advancement in certain scientific fields alone; we have been helped."

When asked by whom, he replied: "The people of other worlds."
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