China offers lessons for future of fuel cell vehicles

With over a million plug in vehicles in China and fewer than 500 fuel cell vehicles it would seem like the latter’s chances are slim. But recent moves suggest that China is far from decided, with a strong government-industry alliance and policies underpinning a national target for a million vehicles and over a thousand hydrogen stations in 2030. Targets are not the same as reality of course, but it’s worth noting that China is a command economy and so-called ‘new energy vehicles’ (essentially battery or fuel cell powered) are one of China’s top 10 national industrial priorities for the coming decade, as well as matching their ambitions for new high-value industrial growth.

E4tech Director Adam Chase is speaking at the Future Powertrain Conference on this topic, and will point to the lessons for international fuel cell and battery vehicle industries. Even a small market adoption in China amounts to significant volume, bringing potential for cost reduction, including through local supply chains. None of this is lost on western fuel cell companies, several of whom have built partnerships in China to benefit from China’s ambition to grow a strategic industry to serve as a complement – or perhaps a hedge – for the battery vehicle industry.


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