Sales of hydrogen fuel cell cars will kick off Japan in 2015, car manufacturers and hydrogen suppliers jointly announced recently.
Although numbers of vehicles have not been discussed, the partnership of Honda, Nissan and Toyota said 2015 would mark the start of 'mass production' of fuel cells.
Hydrogen suppliers have committed to establishing a network of 100 refuelling stations in Japan to serve the cars.
Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said it would support the expansion of the hydrogen network.
Work is also underway on developing fuel cells and hydrogen refuelling in Europe. There are already a chain of refuelling points along the HyNor 'hydrogen highway' in Norway, between Oslo and Stavanger.
Mercedes is already trialing fuel-cell versions of the B-Class, while Kia and General Motors have both said they will sell 10,000 fuel cell vehicles each by 2015.