Reborn firm pushes ahead with fuel-cell development
13 August 2009

General Motors still plans to bring a hydrogen fuel-cell car to market by 2012, according to the firm’s new R&D chief.

There had been fears that the imminent retirement of Larry Burns would see the end of GM’s fuel-cell program, but Alan Taub said the firm would continue with its development of the technology.

“Technology leadership is one of the pillars of the company,” said Taub. “That is going to remain, and it will probably be emphasised as part of the brand of GM.”

The Obama administration is not believed to be a fan of hydrogen fuel-cell technology due to the huge costs of developing an infrastructure, but this has not deterred GM.

Taub said GM still has to reduce the cost of fuel cells by 30 per cent to make them competitive with the upcoming Chevrolet Volt's petrol-electric powertrain.

When Taub takes over from Burns on 1 October, his number one priority will be improving the firm’s fuel economy to 35.5mpg across its range by 2016, a government requirement.

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