This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.
GM Unveils Improved Fuel Cell System at Shanghai Auto Show
General Motors Corporation (GM) has developed a fifth-generation automotive fuel cell that is half the size of its predecessor while delivering the same power and performance. GM's fourth-generation fuel cell, incorporated into the Chevrolet Sequel concept vehicle, delivers a range of 300 miles on a tank of 8 kilograms of hydrogen. The new fuel cell, incorporated into the Chevrolet Volt concept vehicle, delivers the same range on a tank of only 4 kilograms of hydrogen. GM is displaying the fuel-cell-powered Volt at Auto Shanghai 2007, a major auto show in China.
The Chevrolet Volt was first introduced at the Detroit Auto Show as a plug-in hybrid vehicle, which stored its energy in a lithium-ion battery pack. The version on display in Shanghai combines a fuel cell with a lithium-ion battery pack and is also capable of being plugged in. To help achieve its 300-mile range, the vehicle incorporates lightweight materials such as molded plastic parts, which cut its curb weight by 30 percent compared to the Sequel. It also features GM's third-generation wheel hub motors—electric motors mounted in the wheels—employing a lightweight "coreless" design in which the motor windings stand alone rather than being wound around a heavy metal core. Auto Shanghai 2007 opened to the public on April 21st and continues through April 28th. See the GM press release and the Shanghai Auto Show Web site.