Hydrogen autos have many competitors that could, in theory, knock them out of existence entirely, retard the industry’s growth and acceptance or at least take a bite out of future market share. Some of the obvious threats to hydrogen autos are those powered by electricity, biofuels, compressed air and plug-in hybrids.
But, there is another threat looming on the horizon that may stunt the growth of hydrogen autos as the accepted vehicles of choice for the future. And, these vehicles are ones that contain ultra efficient internal combustion engines that deliver enough power and torque very high gas mileage (over 150 mpg).
Take for instance, this of the MYT engine pronounced “mighty” that stands for “Massive Yet Tiny”. The new MYT design replaces a 3,000 lb. diesel engine with one weighing just 150 lbs. While theoretically the MYT engine could run on hydrogen one day, it is being designed and tested to run on biofuels such as biodiesel.
Another threat to the hydrogen auto is the Loremo LS and Loremo GT that are both being developed for a rollout date sometime in 2009. The Loremo LS, in particular, has a top speed of 96 mph, fuel efficiency of 157 mpg and a range of over 780 miles. The Loremo LS is powered by a 20 hp, 2-cylinder turbodiesel engine and has a total weight of less than 1,000 pounds.
Now, couple either of these engines with a hybrid system and we will be talking about downright stingy fuel use. While not an ultimate solution, producing vehicles that achieve over 150 mpg is certainly a giant step in the right direction towards weaning our nation off foreign fossil fuels and hefty competion for hydrogen autos and other types of vehicles as well.