Mercedes Pairs Hydrogen with Plug-in
While there is increasing attention—thanks, largely, to Tesla in general and the forthcoming introduction, by General Motors, of the Chevrolet Bolt EV—to electric vehicles powered by, well, electricity, there is another type of EV out there that may gain some ground: electric vehicles powered by hydrogen.
Toyota has its Mirai on the road right now. So is the Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell. The Honda Clarity Fuel Cell is supposed to be launching in the U.S. this year.
And Mercedes will be bringing out the GLC F-CELL in 2017. In Europe, that is.
What’s interesting about the GLC F-Cell is that it is also a plug-in vehicle. It features a 9-kWh lithium-ion battery pack that can be charged from a household outlet and is said to provide a full-electric range (on the electricity) of 50 km on the NEDC drive cycle (which is different than the EPA cycle in the U.S.).
Of course, then there is the fuel cell. This has been designed so that it can be housed in the engine compartment of the GLC. Not only is it compact, but the fuel cell stack uses 90 percent less platinum in its stack so that the cost of the system is not as Tiffany-oriented as it otherwise might be. The stack was developed with Ford in Vancouver, Canada, as part of the Automotive Fuel Cell Cooperation joint venture.
There are two Type 4 carbon-fiber reinforced tanks that were developed by Daimler’s NuCellSys along with Hexagon Composites, which is the tanks’ supplier. The tanks are built into the floor of the crossover and hold about 4 kg of hydrogen at 700 bar. Refueling can be performed in about three minutes.
The range of the GLC-F-CELL is on the order of 510 km.
The Mazda CX-5 first appeared on the scene in 2012, and for 2017, the vehicle has undergone some major transformations, to enhance what was already a notable small crossover.
Plenty of interior components are injection molded. But some companies—such as VW—are using a process for trim pieces that both mold a component and cover it in fabric in a single molding process. And it is coming to the U.S. in the not-too-distant future.
While you are probably familiar with origami, the classic art of paper folding that results in things like birds that flap their wings when you pull the tail, or plot devices in one of the Blade Runner films.