Honda starts building hydrogen cars

* FCX Clarity in production * 200 to be built in three years * Leasing will cost about 300 a month...

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Jim Holder
16 June 2008

Honda starts building hydrogen cars

Commercial production of the world's first vehicle powered by a hydrogen fuel cell has begun.

Honda began work today on the FCX Clarity, a four-seat small family car that runs on hydrogen and electricity, emitting only water vapour.

Honda claims the vehicle offers three times greater fuel-efficiency than a traditional, petrol-powered car and plans to produce 200 examples over the three years.

The car will initially be available for lease, starting in July, to a limited number of customers in southern California and then in Japan later this year.

One of the biggest obstacles standing in the way of wider adoption of fuel-cell vehicles is the lack of hydrogen fuelling stations.

The cost of the car, on a three-year lease, is thought to be $600 (300) a month.