Honda CEO Toshihiro Mibe has stated that unlike Toyota, Honda doesn’t see hydrogen combustion as feasible for cars adding that his company had studied the technology’s potential 10 years ago. That doesn’t mean the Japanese automaker is abandoning the chemical element, however. Hydrogen Fuel Cell EVs remain a key part of its zero-emissions strategy looking forward.
Honda and Toyota are two big names among major automakers in Japan and while Toyota is leading the ‘Team Japan’ (which includes Subaru, Mazda, Yamaha and Kawasaki) to save internal combustion engines from extinction, Honda is not part of it. According to the company CEO:
“We have conducted research into every possibility that’s out there. As for hydrogen engines, we see some quite difficult technological challenges. So, about 10 years ago, we decided this would not become mainstream.”
Honda has spoken out against the possibility of hydrogen combustion or, the actual burning of hydrogen to power vehicles, separating itself from its competitor Toyota. However, Honda is by no means abandoning hydrogen fuel cell technology altogether. The company sees it as a viable fuel source for larger, long-range vehicles, or in cells as standalone power packs. The Honda CEO says:
“If we look at what will become mainstream, probably for smaller mobility it will be EVs, and fuel cells for larger mobility. That is the conclusion so far.”
To what extent hydrogen is involved in that future remains unclear, given that Honda is still exploring the technology, but based on its CEO’s words, battery-powered Honda cars seem much more likely.
Like most Japanese automakers, Honda and Toyota have been left far behind when it comes to mass-producing pure EVs or battery electric vehicles, although the two companies are now working to add more EVs to the lineup, but with their focus distributed in other areas such as hybrids & hydrogen, they are already too late to the EV party.
A 3d animation professional with over 20 years of industry experience having served in leading organizations & production facilities of Pakistan, an avid car enthusiast and petrolhead with an affection to deliver writings to help shape opinions. Formerly written for PakWheels as well as major publications including Dawn. Founder of CarSpiritPK.com