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VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

Old 06-02-2006, 12:14 PM
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Default VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

Old 06-02-2006, 01:47 PM
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Question Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

Is GM saying High Volume production of Hydrogen-Fuel-Cell vehicles by 2010

Originally Posted by Forbes Article
General Motors is betting that hydrogen-powered vehicles will one day make you forget about those billion-dollar losses it's racking up.
When will this happen? Remarkably soon, by GM's reckoning. The company has delivered a carefully worded pledge: GM will develop a hydrogen-fuel-cell vehicle that could compete on cost with traditional vehicles-if it were to be built in high volumes-by 2010.
Among outside experts there's a consensus that if hydrogen-fuel-cell cars ever make economic sense, it will be a long time from now. "GM's confidence is simply irrational," says Joseph Romm, a former Department of Energy official in the Clinton Administration and author of the book The Hype About Hydrogen. "Nobody in their right mind believes that hydrogen fuel cells could add to the bottom line in the next two decades. It would require like seven miracles, many outside the hands of GM."

Last edited by Katz6768; 06-02-2006 at 03:11 PM.
Old 06-02-2006, 02:41 PM
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Default Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

Ignoring the rest: Given how so far it's been impossible for the automakers to get permission to build hydrogen fueling stations for vehicular testing, how does GM think they'll get the infrastructure up to support a hydrogen mass car network in less than four years? (Part of the article here and on other places about the bumps in hydrogen car testing.)

That given, I agree, this is laughably ludacris. At one point, I used to think Hydrogen was the answer, clearly it's not.
Old 06-02-2006, 07:02 PM
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Default Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

Considering that GM hasn't gotten BAS to the showroom floor after 4 years, I have a hard time believing they'll get a completely different (and much more complicated) technology in 4 years.

I think GM is pushing hydrogen because Bush is pushing hydrogen, and giving truckloads of taxpayer cash for GM to waste.
Old 06-02-2006, 08:09 PM
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Default Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

NASA had a single-stage to orbit program that stopped because they couldn't order a light enough and strong enough material . . . unobtainium. That is the H(2) program. If it were just one major problem, OK maybe. But there are so many starting from the well-head that it just doesn't make sense.

Bob Wilson
Old 06-02-2006, 08:58 PM
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Default Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen


i agree with some others here. Electricity is going to win the alternate fuel war. Its already in place and the battery tech is coming fast. Plug in hybrids will start appearing 2 -4 years from now.

Hydrogen is a whole other can of worms and needs a few decades to get the bugs and infrastructure into place.

GM is in DEEP trouble. They underestimated the oil market (and greed to keep the prices artificially up) . They overestimated our desire to keep buying 8 mile per gallon monster trucks at $3 bucks per gallon. So they did nothing to get into the hybrid market like Toyo Honda and even Ford .

Thus -lets pump out some UNREALISTIC nonsense so that the gov and car buyers still think GM is worth while and 'cares' about the envroment .

Old 06-03-2006, 09:10 AM
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Default Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

It's really quite sad that GM is, practically, pursing the all-or-nothing approach: gas guzzling huge vehicles or perfectly clean hydrogen. The gap is going to destroy another US company and along with it jobs, pensions, and a lot of US pride. Fewer companies within any market leads to lackadaisical research and inflated prices (I'm typing this on a PC running WinXP right now.) Are hybrids the perfect solution? No, but they are a logical step in the progression toward a pollution-free car. I hope GM (in collaboration with Chrysler) can pull a rabbit out of the hat with their late-start hybrid research.
Old 06-03-2006, 10:52 AM
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Default Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

It seems that GM is betting all their chips on hydrogen. Given their structural cost problems (re: labor contracts) and their existing over capacity, and being so far behind on other technology, it might be the only hope they have. They either bleed slowly to death or try to make a mad dash to the new technology. In the end, this will be either viewed looking back as a brilliant desperate strategy or the last gasp of a dying dinosaur. I hope they're successful, that hope of course won't induce me to invest in any GM stock.

Old 06-04-2006, 10:32 AM
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Cool Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

Originally Posted by Norris
Given their [GM rjw] structural cost problems (re: labor contracts) . . .
Let's see if we can make this simple:

labor != engineering
labor != managment
labor != board of directors
labor != stock holders who voted in this board of directors

Inspite of leading each class of vehicle, GM has a sales problem that can not be fixed by H(2) "the demo" driving around DC. What GM needs is a strategy of leading the consumer demand and apparently the current non-labor engineering, management, board of directors and the stock holders are very happy with GM's line-up.

In contrast, 'non-leading' Toyota has a waiting list for Prius measured in months and local dealers adding thosands of dollars to the MSRP. Toyota, Honda and Ford have or have had a problem with making hybrids fast enough so they keep adding high profit margins to their vehicles and selling every dang one.

Suzuki, KIA and other rice burners sell their cars much cheaper than GM but they don't have a waiting list or force high-profit margin 'eye candy' on each vehicle. The Toyota, Honda and Ford hybrids have that problem and they got there by engineering, insightful management, clued board of directors and stock holders.

Bob Wilson
Old 06-04-2006, 12:48 PM
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Default Re: VERY interesting Forbes article on hydrogen

I agree with Bob Wilson on this one: Aside from the obvious two-fold problems of outrageously excessive executive compensation and the under-funded pension plan for the workers, GM has been missing the boat on market trends for the past 15 years.

1. People are keeping their cars longer, so the fact that most GM products are junk by 70k miles is a big turn-off to consumers.
2. GM has been trying to take the "short cut" road to the ultimate clean vehicle technology. Hydrogen-powered cars MAY be part of the future, but there will be a LOT of intermediate steps inbetween that GM has just chosen to ignore. Toyota/Honda understand that hybrids are an important intermediate technology; Ford is researching the possibility of making E85 mainstream; the European car makers are making advances in cleaner diesel technology. Why can't GM do these things? It's like GM is trying to develop the Warp Drive before you've perfected making the chemical rocket.

Last edited by AshenGrey; 06-04-2006 at 12:55 PM. Reason: keystroke errors

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