With sixteen thousand hydrogen fuel cell passenger vehicles sold in 2021, the hydrogen fuel cell automobiles market registered an all-time high, according to Information Trends. The sales were almost 90 percent higher than the sales of these vehicles in 2020.
In its 2022 study, Global Market for Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles, Information Trends says that forty-four thousand hydrogen fuel cell passenger vehicles have sold since their sales began. These sales are on top of the sales of commercial fuel cell trucks and buses which are witnessing significant traction.
Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are electric vehicles that generate hydrogen on board the vehicle, said Sana Arif Bhatti, research analyst at Information Trends. But they have significant advantages over battery-electric vehicles, the foremost being rapid fueling and long range.
Two Asian auto brands are dominating the market, with Hyundai’s Nexo SUV steadily expanding its lead over Toyota’s Mirai sedan. Both companies have displayed an unflinching commitment to fuel cell vehicles which augurs well for the growth of this market. Australian company, H2X, is also making waves in this market.
Chinese automakers that have rolled out fuel cell passenger vehicles include SAIC Motor, Great Wall Motor, Grove Hydrogen Automotive, and GAC Motor. The vehicles produced by these automakers are currently used for China’s domestic demands.
Among European automakers, Jaguar Land Rover Automotive and Ineos Automotive are launching SUVs, both of which are in a testing stage. Opel, which is responsible for fuel cell development within the PSA group, its testing its Zafira family vans equipped with fuel cells.
BMW is poised to enter the fuel cell passenger vehicle market with its X5 small-series hydrogen fuel cell vehicle by late 2022. Other European automakers rolling out fuel cell vehicles include H2O e-mobile GmbH (Germany), Hopium (France), Microcab Industries, (U.K.), Pininfarina S.p.A. (Italy), Riversimple Movement (U.K.), and Viritech (U.K.).
Mainstream U.S. automakers have not outlined any firm plans in this space, but two companies, Hyperion Motors and Ronn Motor Group, have plans for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.
According to Ms. Bhatti, the growth of hydrogen fuel cell passenger vehicles market has been slower than anticipated because of the expense of building these vehicles as well as the lack of a sufficient number of hydrogen fueling stations. However, the buildout of hydrogen stations continues apace, and the cost of building the vehicles is dropping due to economies of scale.