Would You Drive A Hydrogen Car?

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While there are a handful of automakers still desperately holding onto the concept of a hydrogen car, it seems like America has largely moved past hydrogen as a viable clean power option in favor of electric motors. But I have to know—if you could drive a hydrogen car, would you do it? Would you be interested in driving it for the longer term?

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I’ve been dying to get behind the wheel of a hydrogen vehicle for ages now. I think the concept is neat—you can fill up your car quickly with a liquid form of power, reminiscent of the gas-and-go concept of a current stop to power your internal combustion engine. And it also has the benefit of being a hell of a lot better for the environment than, y’know, fossil fuels.

I have a pal whose European father drives a hydrogen car, and she’s told me that it’s kind of unsettling to ride in just because it’s so quiet. But she doesn’t have any experience in an electric car to compare to, so I don’t know how it relates to an EV.

It’s a much more viable form of power in certain parts of Europe, which actually have the infrastructure to accommodate hydrogen cars. We just don’t have that in the United States. Almost all of our hydrogen filling stations are in California, which means that you can’t feasibly own a hydrogen car in any other state. And I don’t see us developing that any time soon—it’s been enough of a struggle to get a decent network of EV battery chargers in place.

But I’ve been wondering if other folks are interested in hydrogen, or if it’s firmly just a Me Thing. I don’t know if I’d position it as a better choice than an EV, but I just can’t say without firsthand experience. 

Weekends at Jalopnik. Managing editor at A Girl's Guide to Cars. Lead IndyCar writer and assistant editor at Frontstretch. Novelist. Motorsport fanatic.

DISCUSSION

Elizabeth, you know that, currently, most of the hydrogen is produced from fossil fuel, right ? Therefore not any cleaner than gas.

Clean and efficient hydrogen production does not and will probably not exist on the long term.

Hydrogen is just something big oil compagnies found to keep selling you something once gas is gone, instead of, you know, investing in clean electricity which is harder to sell cause kind of everyone can produce his own. Today.

+ You know, it's super expensive.