With auto sales crashing and burning this past year in the U. S., Honda is holding steadfast in its development of hydrogen cars. Honda is known throughout the automobile industry for its good judgment and forward thinking.
For instance, because Honda has focused on rolling out production of smaller, more fuel efficient cars, it actually posted a small profit this past quarter as the other automakers posted a loss or went into bankruptcy (Daimler dropped a loss of $1.6 billion, GM and Chrysler were in bankruptcy).
Honda also had the foresight to release the Insight as the first hybrid car in North America in 1999. With a 3-year hiatus the Honda Insight is now available for purchase once again.
Honda is so confident in hydrogen that it has produced 200 Clarity fuel cell vehicles available for lease in the Los Angeles area. And while the Obama administration has tried to slash the hydrogen R&D budget and Tesla has come out with its $100,000+ Roadster and Nissan has just introduced its 100 mile range Leaf, Honda is not even developing a new battery electric car for the near future.
And while General Motors and Toyota are both double dipping in the hydrogen and plug-in hybrid marketplace, Honda has no use for plug-ins either. All major automakers and some smaller ones too have developed hydrogen cars and expect the market to eventually go this direction.
Honda puts a conservative timeframe of 2020 for the rollout of production hydrogen cars, however. Yet, other car companies are more aggressive in their timeframes of 2012 to 2015. So, if you’ve missed this round of Cash for Clunkers, fear not. There will be another chance a few years from now as disruptive automotive technology will give consumers another chance to trade in their gas guzzlers for zero emission hydrogen cars.