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GM Continues its Drive toward Hydrogen In 2005 California Fuel Cell Partnership Road Rally

U.S. Army Joins CaFCP Caravan with CA Debut of Fuel Cell Powered Pickup Truck

Sacramento, Calif. - Hydrogen-powered fuel cell technologies designed for consumer use, and for U.S. military non-tactical vehicle applications, will be demonstrated by General Motors Corp. and the U.S. Army as part of a rolling fuel cell vehicle convoy featured during the 2005 California Fuel Cell Partnership (CaFCP) Road Rally, Sept. 29 - Oct. 1.

The modified Chevrolet Silverado, equipped with two 94-kilowatt fuel cell stacks fueled by hydrogen and GM's HydroGen3 fuel cell minivan will be among several fuel cell vehicles featured during CaFCP member caravans, educational displays and test-drive opportunities in several Sacramento and San Francisco Bay Area communities.

"Road Rally 2005: Fueling the Future" will bring nearly 20 hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, a hydrogen reformer, a mobile hydrogen refueler and numerous other technologies to Sacramento, Davis, Martinez, Berkeley, Oakland, San Jose, San Carlos and San Francisco. During the three-day event, the general public will have an opportunity to test drive these vehicles, watch them refuel and learn about hydrogen production.

GM, along with other CaFCP members, will highlight hydrogen as an alternative fuel during the rally. Along the route, representatives of CaFCP member companies will address questions about the future of hydrogen, infrastructure development and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

In April, the U.S. Army took delivery of the modified fuel cell Chevrolet Silverado that is capable of generating 188 kW and 317 foot-pounds of torque, or roughly the motor torque generated by GM's 5.3 liter V-8 engine. This is the first time the vehicle has been driven in California. It will be delivered to the Marines at Camp Pendleton, Calif., later this year for demonstration and evaluation.

"This vehicle has spent the last few months performing civilian-type duty at Ft. Belvoir, Va. where Army soldiers have been evaluating its performance and learning first-hand about hydrogen and fuel cells," said Dr. McClelland, director Tank-Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) of the U.S. Army.

"Fuel cell vehicles have the potential to support multiple military needs such as increased system efficiency, quality electrical power, and field generated potable water; to name a few. We're proud to have this vehicle in the road rally and look forward to sharing our perspectives on fuel cells," he added.

GM has a history of working with the military on their transportation needs. The automaker produces more than half of the non-tactical military vehicles purchased each year.

In addition to the pickup truck, GM's HydroGen3 fuel cell vehicle will participate in the rally. GM is demonstrating the capabilities of its HydroGen3 in California and other areas through activities supported in part by an award from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). In partnership with the DOE, GM will add another 40 fuel cell vehicles to its demonstration fleets in California, Washington, DC, New York and Michigan by 2009.

The primary goal in developing the HydroGen3 is to improve the performance and daily use of the fuel cell propulsion system, which has passed rigorous endurance and temperature tests in a variety of global environments. The end product is a traditional driving experience in a vehicle that emits only pure water vapor.

"Through events such as the annual road rally, CaFCP is working hard to demonstrate fuel cell vehicles in real-world, day-to-day situations, and examine key issues such as fuel infrastructure development, safety, codes and standards, that must be addressed as we help prepare the California market for this new technology," said Al Weverstad, 2005 CaFCP chairperson and an executive director at General Motors' Public Policy Center.

"The fastest way to bridge from fuel cell demonstrations to actual commercial viability is through education and collaboration," Weverstad added. "The CaFCP illustrates the kind of teamwork required by industry and governments to help prime the pump and facilitate the transition to viable hydrogen-related technologies."

About General Motors Corp.

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world's largest automaker, has been the global industry sales leader since 1931. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 317,000 people around the world. It has manufacturing operations in 32 countries and its vehicles are sold in 200 countries. In 2004, GM sold nearly 9 million cars and trucks globally, up 4 percent and the second-highest total in the company's history. GM's global headquarters are at the GM Renaissance Center in Detroit. More information about GM's environment, technology and public policy activities found at www.gmability.com.

U.S. Army RDECOM

The U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command gets technology out of the laboratories and puts it into the hands of war fighters as quickly as possible. RDECOM manages eight laboratories and research, development and engineering centers, plus the U.S. Army Materiel Systems Analysis Activity, System of Systems Integration, international technology centers, and capability and technology integrated process teams. RDECOM has more than 17,000 military, civilian and direct contractor personnel, a multi-billion dollar annual budget and is responsible for 75 percent of the Army's science and technology objectives. RDECOM ensures the nation has the protection it needs for the 21st century and beyond. More information on RDECOM can be found at www.rdecom.army.mil

California Fuel Cell Partnership

The California Fuel Cell Partnership is a voluntary, industry-government collaboration to advance a new vehicle and fueling technology that could move the world toward practical and affordable environmental solutions. CaFCP members are demonstrating fuel cell-powered electric vehicles under real day-to-day driving conditions; testing alternative fuels and demonstrating the viability of an alternative fuel infrastructure technology; facilitating the path to commercialization; and increasing public awareness of fuel cell electric vehicles. The CaFCP is working to facilitate placement of up to 300 fuel cell passenger cars and buses on the road by the end of 2007.

For more information, please contact the California Fuel Cell Partnership at: [email protected]

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Source:  General Motors

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