Parallel to their efforts in developing fuel cell systems in partnership with the U.S Army, General Motors is also running its own fleet of research vehicles as part of a 119-vehicle Project Driveway program, launched in 2007. One of these vehicles is the Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell.
The car has just achieved a remarkable milestone by clocking its 100,000th experimental mile. The car started life as a fleet vehicle at Walt Disney Company’s studio in Burbank. After Project Driveway, it became an engineering development vehicle driven by as many as 10 GM engineers.
The Equinox has been a hard worker, but its record is but a trifle compared to the total leg work of GM’s fuel cell test fleet. They have accumulated nearly 3 million miles since 2007, equating, according to General Motors, to 157,894 gallons of gasoline, which means more than $552,631 is saved in avoided fuel cost.
GM has not revealed details of the system that powers the Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell. It is all classified for now. But one thing’s clear. General Motors is relying heavily on the fuel cell technology as a more viable solution than electric power.
“We believe hydrogen fuel cell technology holds tremendous potential to one day help reduce our dependence on petroleum,” said Charlie Freese, executive director of GM’s global fuel cell engineering activities. “The resilience of our test fleet and new research partnerships are helping us reach this goal.”