Yesterday, I had the pleasure of interviewing Andreas Klugescheid, Corporate Communications Manager for BMW North America. Mr. Klugescheid was good enough to clear up some questions and misinformation that has been posted about the new BMW Hydrogen 7 luxury auto that is rolling out early next year. Unfortunately, this blog was also guilty of proliferating some of this misinformation, so this interview is a chance to correct the previous blog postings concerning the Hydrogen 7 versus the hydrogen limousine. Since this is a rather lengthy interview, it will be broken into two parts.
Here is Part 1 of the interview:
Hydro Kevin (HK): I read where the name of the new auto is actually BMW Hydrogen 7 Saloon, where saloon is part of the name – is this correct?
Andreas Klugescheid (AK): You can call it saloon or sedan, but that’s not the name of the auto. The auto is called BMW Hydrogen 7.
HK: How much will the new BMW Hydrogen 7 lease for?
AK: This is an open-ended question and most likely it will be determined by region. It’s possible that in the U. S. that the lessees won’t have to pay anything for the lease depending upon the length of the lease and how good of an ambassador the lessee is for hydrogen.
HK: Who are the “select” individuals who will be the initial lessees? How is this pool of candidates determined?
AK: The most important criteria for determining who gets a lease is can this person be a good ambassador for hydrogen. If this person can influence the public in moving toward hydrogen, they will be a good candidate.
HK: How many liquid hydrogen stations are there in the U. S. presently?
AK: In the U. S., there are currently two liquid hydrogen stations, one in Washington D. C. and one in Oxnard, California near Los Angeles. There are also a number of mobile fueling stations in the U. S.
HK: So, another criteria would be that the lessees live in Washington D. C. or around Los Angeles?
AK: That would be preferable but not absolutely necessary. Suppose we found a good candidate in Vermont for instance, we could move a mobile liquid hydrogen fueling station to Vermont for this purpose. We are very flexible.
HK: Why has BMW decided to buck the industry standard and go with liquid hydrogen over compressed hydrogen?
AK: I wouldn’t say that compressed hydrogen is the industry standard since there are a number of companies doing development with liquid hydrogen. Liquid hydrogen has a number of advantages with the number one advantage being energy density. Also, cryogenic hydrogen is a real challenge for us, but energy density is the real advantage.
This concludes Part 1 of the interview and tomorrow, Part 2 will be posted.