James Glickenhaus Wants To Make A Hydrogen Car

Illustration for article titled James Glickenhaus Wants To Make A Hydrogen Car
Image: Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus
Truck YeahThe trucks are good!

We know the Glickenhaus Boot as a gnarly off-roader, and now Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus says it will follow up that desert-buster with a fuel-cell version called the Zero Emission Boot. It’s such a terrible idea that it actually ends up being kind of awesome.

The new machine osses out the Boot’s original 6.2-liter V8 and replaces it with an electric drivetrain powered by hydrogen fuel cells. It seems like an odd choice for an EV, but I suppose if you’re gonna have range anxiety it’s only fitting to worry about it in the remote locations and extreme conditions off roaders are made for. Range is one of the things that FCEVs excel at when compared with their BEV cousins.

The range of the Boot, or SCG 010, is being reported at a ludicrous 1,000 miles, per Inside EVs. I don’t even know of any gasoline off-roaders capable of that distance without a refuel. So it’s a very lofty goal, which only makes the design doodles on two torn-out notebook pages that much more satisfying. I can imagine James Glickenhaus half awake, scribbling wild figures in a notebook like Jerry Seinfeld jotting down a “flaming globes of Sigmund” bit.

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But Glickenhaus has an entire team behind him, and the original Boot is a competent machine. This FCEV transplant could maybe, eventually come to fruition. In the latest renders Glickenhaus shared, we see the two-door Zero Boot with a large circular opening where the rear doors would be. It looks like an opening to the hydrogen tank with its green “H” though the doodles seem to indicate it’s where luggage goes.

Then again, there are smaller openings that look like refueling doors, so maybe it is the hydrogen tank. The four-door Zero Boot seems to push that mystery compartment back toward the wheel wells, while the trunk is pushed even farther back.

Illustration for article titled James Glickenhaus Wants To Make A Hydrogen Car
Image: Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus
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Illustration for article titled James Glickenhaus Wants To Make A Hydrogen Car
Image: Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus

And that compartment in the two-door providing ready access like that makes me wonder whether the tanks inside are swappable, with extra tanks being carried by support vehicles. The idea of changing tanks is not that farfetched. Recall that a Toyota subsidiary, Toyoda Gosei, developed FCEV tanks that are more pressure-resistant than current tanks. If Glickenhaus could leverage a safe modular tank, it would make an FCEV viable in places that lack the refueling infrastructure.

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The four-door Zero Boot looks more conventional and boring than the two-door version, which I think is proof that even as EVs, pickups should never have more than two doors.

Staff Writer at Jalopnik. Periodista automotriz, Naturally Aspirated Stan.

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DISCUSSION

I had this discussion before. Hydrogen fuel makes no sense if you aren’t using nuclear power. It takes a lot of electricity to make hydrogen gas in a conventional manner.

But Nuclear power is a game changer. If you crank up the heat on a nuclear reactor, you also start making hydrogen gas without using electricity. Something like 30% of our current hydrogen needs could be produced by 3-4 nuclear plants with a reduction in electrical output of only 2-3%.

However, getting people to buy into nuclear plants isn’t going to be easy. And hydrogen has it’s own PR issues.