This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

December 18, 2002

Nissan Unveils Fuel Cell Vehicle; John Deere Vehicle in Development

Nissan Motor Company Ltd. unveiled its first fuel cell vehicle in Japan on December 10th. UTC Fuel Cells, a unit of United Technologies Corporation, provided the 75-kilowatt fuel-cell power plant that powers the hydrogen-fueled vehicle. Called the X-TRAIL FCV (for "Fuel Cell Vehicle"), the prototype vehicle will undergo public road testing in Japan. See the UTC Fuel Cells press release and accompanying photo.

Deere & Company, maker of John Deere equipment for agriculture and industry, will soon join the fuel cell club. The company announced on December 11th that it is developing a fuel-cell-powered version of its Pro-Gator Utility Vehicle, which is used primarily for hauling supplies and equipment around golf courses and other facilities that feature a large amount of turf. John Deere is working with Hydrogenic Corporation, a Canadian fuel cell manufacturer, to develop the vehicle. See the Deere & Company press release.

DOE is supporting fuel cell vehicles through its FreedomCAR program. Its latest contribution is the new Advanced Powertrain Research Facility, located at DOE's Argonne National Laboratory (ANL). The new test facility, unveiled in November, includes state-of-the-art performance and emissions measurement equipment for testing advanced engines, fuel cells, electric drives, and energy storage devices. The facility is capable of testing vehicles fueled with gasoline, diesel fuel, natural gas, and hydrogen. See the ANL press release.

Fuel cell vehicles are also advancing in California, thanks to a public-private partnership called, appropriately, the California Fuel Cell Partnership (CaFCP). The CaFCP just released its goals for 2003, which include introducing fuel cell vehicles into fleets, adding additional hydrogen fueling stations, and operating up to 60 fuel cell vehicles. See the CaFCP press release.