The Eco-Trek series (click for summaries of all episodes) we have been bringing you every week has come to an end. The longest continuous drive of three Mercedes-Benz B-Class F-CELLs ever was completed on June 1 when the cars arrived back in Stuttgart, Germany after 125 days on the road.
Daimler began the drive around the world to showcase the hydrogen fuel cell cars and to demonstrate that “they are a safe and reliable means of transport over long distances and in the widest variety of road and weather conditions.” On January 30, 2011 three Mercedes-Benz B-Class F-CELL cars undertook a circumnavigation of the world. The cars traveled across four continents and through 14 countries over a route covering 30,000 kilometers (roughly 18,000 miles). The cars preformed well but a hydrogen-filling infrastructure is not yet in place. The team therefore had to travel with a mobile filling station and hydrogen provided by its partner Linde AG. Daimler used the arrival back in Germany to announce that “together with Linde [we] will build 20 Hydrogen filling stations in Germany by 2013″ to ensure a supply of hydrogen produced purely from renewable resources for the steadily increasing number of fuel-cell vehicles on the roads. Mercedes-Benz also announced it will start mass production of its B-Class F-CELLs in 2014, one year earlier than expected. This is only one of a number of cleaner vehicle options that are becoming available and jockeying for space in the automobile market. Highly efficient internal combustion engines, bio-fuels such as algae based ethanol, electric and hybrid vehicles are all cleaner alternatives to the current car technology. Which one will dominate the market and become accepted? Will several gain acceptance and popularity? These are all big and important questions for the future.
See below for video.