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Pike Research forecasts fuel cell vehicle cumulative sales to cross the 1M mark in 2020 with $16.9B in annual revenue

The fuel cell vehicle (FCV) market is now in the ramp-up phase to commercialization, anticipated by automakers to happen around 2015. According to a new report from Pike Research, commercial sales of FCVs will reach 1 million vehicles by 2020, with a cumulative 1.2 million vehicles sold by the end of that year, generating $16.9 billion in annual revenue.

Pike Research’s analysis indicates that, during the pre-commercialization period from 2010 to 2014, approximately 10,000 FCVs will be deployed. Following that phase, the firm forecasts that 57,000 FCVs will be sold in 2015, with sales volumes ramping to 390,000 vehicles annually by 2020. While these latest figures represent a downgrade from Pike Research’s previous FCV forecasts, published in the first quarter of 2010, the firm expects a step change in FCV production levels to occur in 2015.

Early sales will be focused on areas where infrastructure investments have been or are being made, such as the United States (primarily California and the New York City region); Germany; Scandinavia; Japan (mainly Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka, and Fukuoka); South Korea (primarily around Seoul); and Shanghai, China.

The largest market for FCVs will be the Asia Pacific region, which will account for more than half of total worldwide sales in 2020, according to Pike. The most rapid growth, however, will come in Western Europe, where sales with increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of almost 53%.

The limiting factor for the FCV market will be the availability of hydrogen infrastructure. If current plans for station construction are delayed or abandoned, the rollout of FCVs will be similarly pushed back.

—Pike Research senior analyst Lisa Jerram

Early adoption is likely to be focused in Japan, Germany, and California, where there is significant fueling infrastructure planned. Transit buses have also been used as a test bed for fuel cell technology, though they lag somewhat behind cars in the timeframe for commercial viability. Transit fuel cell buses offer zero emissions and low noise operation, as well as greater fuel efficiency than internal combustion engines. Pike Research’s projections are for commercially viable transit buses to follow that of light-duty vehicles (LDVs), with this market more dependent on subsidies or incentives for adoption than the car market.

Based on the current state of battery-electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and conventional hybrids, Pike believes that light-duty fuel cell cars will not see true demand until the following conditions are met:

  • Costs are significantly reduced;
  • Market conditions or regulations place a premium on zero tailpipe emissions or non-petroleum-based fuels; and
  • Hydrogen infrastructure is scaled up to meet the demand of drivers.

These conditions will likely have to happen simultaneously; this is not an “either/or” set of conditions. The major exception to that ultimatum is cost. Should fuel cell vehicles reach cost parity with diesel-hybrid models, demand could be significantly higher, thereby spurring greater investment in infrastructure.

...In the first two ears of early commercial production phase, deployments will likely be more supply-driven than demand-driven. Consequently, up to 2016, the FCV market will probably only be in the tens of thousands. Pike Research anticipates this phase will resemble the current controlled rollout of BEVs. Automakers will initially be conservative with production numbers as they determine true consumer demand. After the initial rollout, however, production numbers may see a dramatic uptick based on demand.

—Fuel Cell Vehicles

Pike Research’s report, “Fuel Cell Vehicles”, analyzes opportunities and challenges in the development of commercially viable fuel cell cars, buses, and trucks. The report provides an examination of the key market drivers and barriers for FCV development in the face of competition from incumbent internal combustion engine vehicles and new plug-in electric vehicles. The report includes a status update on the progress of fuel cell R&D toward meeting commercial technical and cost targets for cars and buses. The report also covers key countries’ policies promoting development and adoption of FCVs, strategies and plans of major industry players, and discussion of the vehicle segments and drivetrain configurations under development.

The report forecasts global pre-commercial deployments of LDVs and buses through 2014, global commercial sales of LDVs and buses from 2015 through 2020, and potential revenue from fuel cell LDVs from 2015 through 2020.



Ep they have enough people wangting it to pay for the infrastructure easy they already did the bean counting on that. Thats one thing big oil is very good at doing the bean counting.

Aas for laws of physics.. they dont prevent fuel cell cars.

Bob Wallace

Roger, you do not have a clue.

Insurance companies are not having their profits eliminated. Their profits are being restricted to 10% - 15% of the premiums paid with the other 85% - 90% going to health care.

Insurance companies are going to be operating on a 'cost plus' basis rather than a 'collect the payment and then try to hang onto as much as possible' basis.

What is offered in Exchange policies will be standardized and it will be extremely easy to find premium costs and customer satisfaction rating for those companies.

This is the free market at work.

Some sort of volunteer health savings account will not work. A significant portion of the public will fail to make contributions to their accounts and then show up at emergency rooms for "free health care" just like they are now doing.

Those of us who do buy insurance (or give up income in exchange for employer paid insurance) will be paying for the free loaders.

Roger Pham

Hi Bob,
Please kindly read my free-market health care idea and give me some feedback. It will be difficult to curb cost with 3rd-party-payor health care system. Medicaid and health insurance are heavily abused.
Thank you in advance.

Bob Wallace

"The only way to curb health spending cost is to allow everyone with a basic health credit account (HCA) and a health saving account (HSA)."

What will force people to contribute to their HCA and HSA? A mandate? If there is no requirement that each individual contribute then we will be where we are now. Some have insurance and some freeload. Some will get sick/injured before they have time to accumulate significant savings and will either die or be financially ruined.

To protect yourself, on your own, you need well in excess of a million dollars saved up. Per family member. How many people are capable of saving that sort of money?

"Those without an income will have a basic credit account to spend on health expenses. When they work, they will be allowed voluntarily to contribute to a health saving account, after paying for the HCA debt."

Medicaid, with a requirement that the you've got to pay your prior medical expenditures after you go back to work.

Really doesn't work for those making 'working people' wages. Who is going to go to work at Walmart when a big hunk of your marginal earnings is going to be confiscated to pay for your maternity, car accident, serious illness bill?

"The more they contribute to the HSA, the higher the HCA will get, giving an incentive to voluntary contribution to the HSA, WITHOUT coersion, without mandate to buy any type of insurance!!!."

If you're lucky enough to build a very large HSA before you get sick or injured. And if you have the discipline to save ahead of time. Most don't, that's why a very large portion of the population gets close to retirement age with no retirement investments/savings.

"For catastrophic health cost, people can pool their HCA and HSA into a risk sharing pool,"

A different term for that is "insurance policy".

Insurance is a wonderful invention. For small money you can insure yourself against a million dollar health bill, a house fire, accidentally killing someone in a car crash and loosing an expensive settlement case.

And you can get that coverage starting the first day you purchase your policy. You don't have to save/contribute for 20-30 years before you can afford to need medical care.

"Computerized Data Mining of billing patterns of all health care providers will allow the consumers to choose which provider is more cost effective"

The new health care law does the same.

"With a defined budget of their own money and with the ability to find cost-effective providers, people will get the best of care for the least cost! People will spend according to their means."

We'll get third world health care. The rich will be able to buy excellent care and the poor will die.

"HSA is inheritable."

The children of those who get very sick and haven't accumulated large savings accounts will be paying their parent's medical bills for decades. Few of us are going to kick our elders to the curb in order to save money.

The rich will leave their children plenty of money. Your scheme just screws the "other 99%" of us so that the rich can sock away a few more bucks.

Bob Wallace

Roger, there are two different and distinct problems:

1) 40 million Americans can't afford health insurance or are excluded from health insurance due to previous health problems. About 40,000 Americans unnecessarily die each year simply because they can't afford medical care.

2) Medical costs are too damn high.

The health care law is not perfect but it does provide a mechanism for those 40 million to obtain affordable health insurance in a competitive, free market insurance system.

It saves US taxpayers money and lowers insurance premiums for us all.

It deals with some of the problems of medical costs by doing things like funding more preventative care, training more physicians (great care at better prices), simplifying record keeping (cutting staff costs in hospitals and doctors' offices) and reducing the number of duplicate tests.

It also funds Medicare fraud investigations.

It creates a competitive environment in which insurance companies will need to cover the same benefits and the premium costs will be easy to find.

There's a lot in that bill. You really should read the highlights...

Roger Pham

Bob stated: "Some sort of volunteer health savings account will not work. A significant portion of the public will fail to make contributions to their accounts and then show up at emergency rooms for "free health care" just like they are now doing."

Yes, Bob, the HSA is voluntary, but the HCA (Health Credit Account) is given to everyone in the state, and every ER visit will be charged to that account. When that person gets a paycheck, a small percentage of money owed to the HCA will be automatically deducted with each paycheck. It's kinda like automatic deduction for child support payment in many states. With biometric technology like computerized facial recognition and finger print reading, a person showed up in the ER need not have any paper work at all, and still can be identified biometrically and charged to their HCA.
This will make people think twice before showing in the ER. ER care is very expensive because they do CT scan on almost every patient with headaches, with abdominal pain, with back pain, etc...EAch CT scan is charged over $1000 and irradiates the patient with 200 times the radiation dose of a plain X-ray.

With an HCA, eveyone can see their family doctor for regular illness instead of going to the ER. This will save a lot of unnecessary expenses. Each dollar spent on controlling diabetes and hypertension and other chronic diseases can save ten dollars spent on hospitalization and other complications of untreated diabetes and hypertension with multi-organ damages.

The doctors will be very happy because they don't have to verify insurance, don't have to sign up with 10-20 different insurances with different rules and policy, don't have to negotiate payment rates, don't have to deal with claim rejection and claim appeals for payment. Dealing with insurances and Medicaid and Medicare is the main reason that doctors quit their practice or retire early. Doctors and Hospitals have to hire more people and charge more to cover the huge bureaucracy cost of dealing with third-party payers.
With a system of HCA and HSA, health providers only have to swipe the HCA card and submit the diagnosis code, procedure code and be done. Payment is received immediately, electronically. A 30% saving on overhead expenses that can be passed on to the patients, and will be passed on to the patients, because providers compete for cost and quality at the same time, unlike now, neither.

Doctors and hospitals will have strong incentives be cost-effective , because patients are monitoring costs because they are paying out of their own pocket. Right now, the health care providers have little incentive to practice cost-effectively on patients with insurance, because the patients don't have to pay for it.

Insurance, on the other hand, are trying to cut cost by raising co-payment, deductibles and excluding coverages of many drug items and procedures...This make it hard for many poor patients who already pay hundreds of dollars monthly for insurance, yet can't afford the co-payment or deductibles to see the doctors...waiting until they get real sick and go to the ER...then the ER will charge insurance an arm and a leg for shoddy and rushed health care that frequently don't get the patient well!!!

With a HCA and HSA system, there will be no copay, no deductibles, no denial of existing conditions, no denial of coverage for any drugs, procedures, or orthosis or durable medical goods, etc...You have the fund, you have good health care. period! You can see any doctors that you want, you can easily find the most cost-effective doctor for your main condition from internet data mining system...there will no longer be problem finding a provider in your penalty of seeing a specialist out-of-network...
Now, many Medicare or Medicaid patient in rural areas have to drive hundreds of miles to find a doctor who accept low-paying Mcare or Mcaid, with all kinds of hassels for the doctors to have to comply with the bureaucracy of the gov..
I can write a book on the ills of the current health care system...

Bob Wallace

OK, Roger, tell me how your health care system works in these two situations:

1) You're newly married, not long out of school, and expecting your first child. But complications. Your wife delivers early and preemie care costs you $49,000. Your child has further complications and you're looking at tens of thousands of dollars per year for the next few years.

You've got little in your HSA and now you've got a $49,000 bill to repay along with the cost of a new child with serious costs to come.

2) Your twenty year old son/daughter is riding their bike in the bike lane and is hit be a drunk and ends up a quadriplegic. Obviously they have no money in their HSA and no ability to pay back the HCA bill. Do you just let them die?

You know, Roger, you do yourself a disservice by not reading the provisions of the health care law that I've linked for you, twice.

It deals with things like rural health care, copays, denial for existing conditions, drug coverage, excluded coverage, etc.

It provides health insurance for everyone legally in the country. That makes it possible for people to get treated early when treatment is the least expensive.

I'm not saying that the bill is perfect. Almost no new legislation is perfect. But it gives us a solution to the worst problems and a strong basis for working on the next set.

Roger Pham

Ok, Bob, first of all, with the Free-Market Health Care system, the cost will be reduced to a fraction of currently outrageously costly due to lack of cost competition. The $49,000 bill may well be less than $25,000 or even less than $16,000...How do I know that? Because the UK and the Japanese are able to reduce their per-capita health cost to 1/3rd that of the US, and get better results!!! We can even do it for even less...
For those who don't have the HSA, there is still the HCA (Health Credit Account) with credit limit tens of thousands of dollars, depending on the person's income and on their monthly contribution to the HSA. And then there are still Mom and Dad, Grampa and Grama, Uncles Joe, Bill, and Ted, etc...Aunts Dorothy, Mildred, etc...and Bros John, James, Peter, etc...

Don't forget the Risk Sharing Pool formed by extended family members or church group, or alumni groups, etc, in which, if one member has exceeded his/her HCA, can draw up to 20-25% the HSA and HCA's of the rest of the group. For a large group, the benefit may run to the $ millions. This allows tight family bond and tight social organization to take of each others. Do not depend on the Gov. to take care of your own social needs, unless you wanna go the Socialist and Communist route...
Do the same for any member of your family...enlist them into a risk-sharing pool that will allow them to use a portion of the HSA and HCA of the rest of the members in case of catastrophic illness. What if family don't care for each other? It means that they have bad genes...Why should the gov. raise taxes in order to promote mediocrity or illegitimacy? To have a sustainable society, good genes should be allowed to be spread and bad genes should be allowed to perish on their own...the Gov. should have nothing to do with it. The Gov. should only act as a referee in order to promote fair conducts and equal opportunity for everyone. The sick, and the infirm should not receive preferential treatments from the gov. or our gov. will bankrupt. Families should take of their own health and the health of their kin folks.

You know, Bob, you do yourself a disservice by believe in socialism, communism and in all the hollow promises of ObamaCare as if they are sustainable and that they can really deliver them. The gov. cannot mandate that health ins. should do this and that...they deny existing conditions and other coverages so that they can charge reasonable rates for cut cost, to make insurance affordable. Otherwise, their costs will escalate...and they are mandated to keep premiums below certain leve...a recipe for bankruptcy...

Having health ins does not guarantee receipt of health care, if you can't afford co-pay, or deductibles, or find local doctors esp specialists who will accept your ins. I've seen plenty of people have ins. but no access to local health care, ended up in ER for much higher cost and much poorer services.

Bob Wallace

Roger, what you seem to be describing is a very complicated insurance system which is designed to benefit the rich. Those who don't have lots of family or "alumni groups" to hook up with get screwed.

"What if family don't care for each other? It means that they have bad genes...Why should the gov. raise taxes in order to promote mediocrity or illegitimacy? To have a sustainable society, good genes should be allowed to be spread and bad genes should be allowed to perish on their own.."

So the rich deserve health care and the rest of us deserve to die.

Let me ask you, are police and fire departments socialism or communism? I'm having trouble deciding which they are.

Or are police and fire something else? Could they be an agreement among citizens to pool resources in order to provide all with services that most of us could not afford all by ourselves?

Do you want to live in a country where the rich have private bodyguards and fire departments and the rest of us are left to fend for ourselves?

Would you have been one of those Tea Party people who cheered at the idea of the uninsured guy left to bleed to death at the door of the emergency room?

I'm sorry, I don't want to live in that country. I want to live in a country where we take care of each other and not a country that kicks the weakest out to die in the forest.

And I don't give a rat's behind if shared police, fire departments, food and drug safety, and health care look like "socialism" or "communism" to you. If they wander a bit away from the sacred "free market", that's fine with me.

The free market is an evil system if left unregulated. If you don't understand that you don't know your history or understand economics.


I wonder what Darwin would say about Roger's suggestion to let "bad genes" perish? He did define the survival of fittest theory. Perhaps this is why the religious right demand "intelligent design" schooling?

Many European countries have a hybrid healthcare system with a floor of coverage for all citizens and personal coverage for those willing to pay more. That is essentially what Obama has done with insurance reform (not healthcare.)

Bob Wallace

Roger is, apparently, a social Darwinist.

We hung a bunch of those guys at Nuremberg....

What Obama did, IMO, is to take our 'free market' insurance system and regulate it enough to make it no longer dysfunctional. Insurance companies are still free to make a profit, to innovate, to create savings, but not at the expense of the most vulnerable.

And he shifted the expenditure of tax dollars from playing catch-up/clean-up to preventative care by making it possible for people to afford to see a doctor early on rather than showing up in the emergency room in order to die a hundreds of dollars per day.

It's cheaper to keep people healthy. And few of us are willing to let the sick die in the gutter.

Roger Pham

We have the responsibility to undone what damage we have done to nature:

At least halt the GHG emission

Halt further pollution of the environment

Stop intefering with human's natural progress: The USA's founding fathers would turn over on the graves if they learned how much a limited gov. that they has envisioned now has interefered with virtually all aspect of our lives...even forcing all of us now to buy health insurance. Unthinkable!!!

Bob, if we are to maintain a healthy society, we must indulge in socialism. There are at least two types of socialism:
1) unsustainable socialism, in which the gov. takes more and more from the hard working people and give it to the lazy, unwilling, unable, or incapable. The system will collapse when the lazy have more and more kids (on welfare, on support, don't have to work, nor having to pay for their own health care) while the hardworking have fewer kids for obvious reasons. This is the negative demographic change that America is experiencing.
2) sustainable socialism, in which the gov. ensure social justice, fairness and equal opportunity, but not equal outcome for everyone. All the unmotivated and handicapped are still cared for, but with limited budget, and not at the extent that will bankrupt the gov..

My health care plan will give universal coverage for everyone, without unfair tax burden to those hard working people. Those who don't work will still get a basic Health Credit Account with limited credit limit to spend on basic health care needs. They cannot expect to get as much health care as those who are more capable who works harder, or who plan better, etc.

Bob, you cannot expect everyone to drive Cadillacs...some will have to drive old Chevys or beat-up Fords...or walk, or ride bikes...
Yet, if you would read carefully ObamaCare, the mandates of it is to give everyone a Cadillac-level of health care, poor or rich, working or non working. It ain't gonna happen!

Medicaid recipients abuse their priviledge heavily. They make rounds with the doctors weekly to get medications that they don't even need, to give to or to sell back to their friends. Have you heard of "crazy checks?" Mcaid & welfare moms coach their kids to act dumb or crazy in front of the Dr. so that the Dr. (already dimwitted thus having to accept Mcaid) would certify that their kids are handicapped, to get additional support checks ("crazy checks") and other perks...from yours and mine tax dollars...States after states are busting their budget to supporting Mcaid in compliance with ObamaCare...while cutting fundings for other programs.

Roger Pham

Anyway, sorry that I've abused the kindness of GCC in allowing such off-topic discussion.
Thank you, Bob and everyone else, for the lively discussion and the constructive critiques of my health plan.
Best wishes to everyone.

Bob Wallace

Roger - your version of what is happening in health care is so far from reality that it is scary. You have no idea what the truly poor are up against trying to get medical care for themselves and their children. Your stuff is as twisted as Reagan and his 'welfare queens'.

I'm afraid that you're an example of why we have to regulate the free market. If we don't a few selfish, greedy individuals will grab more than their share and shut others out.

Most of us do not want to live in a world where only the children of the rich get the food, education and nurturing they need in order to thrive. We don't want to live in a world in which if you get a bad break you get tossed aside.

Our founding fathers designed a country in which all people would get a fair shake. They had lived under control of an aristocracy and they fought to get free of a ruling/wealthy class. We don't want to establish a new aristocracy of those who got lucky now. We do not want to be ruled by the rich. We want our country back.


Regardless of what is being said here, Nissan is well on the way with a much lower cost (1/6), much high energy density, higher efficiency FC for their next generation FC Vehicle. On-board hydrogen storage issue will also be solved in the next few years. Domestic hydrogen production may part of the end solution. Transforming other energies such as electricity, NG etc into hydrogen and than compressing/storing it for future use may become common place in the post 2020 years.

Roger Pham

Thank you, HarveyD, for the update. It is indeed very encouraging to see H2 techs and Battery techs are progressing parallel to each other at a very rapid speed.

Since none of us can predict the future, let us all keep our minds open for new and exciting changes. The lively discussion in this article has shown that there is a wide variation in preferences and opinions that simply can't be changed nor be convinced by any degree of persuasion. As such, it is best that many different Green Car technologies should be encouraged in order to satisfy the diverse preferences of the consumers. H2-FCV, H2-ICE-HEV, and BEV and PHEV can all co-exist and complementing each others.

Similarly, when it comes it health care or other social issues, each states of the union should be allowed to pursue approaches that will work best for that state. Liberal-Democratic-leaning states probably would lean toward some sort of socialized medicine and other forms of social supports, while Conservative-Republican-leaning states may prefer a Free-market health care system in which individuals or small groups take more responsibility over their finances, their health care and their destiny.

One size does not fit all for such a large and diverse Union as the USA.

Bob Wallace

Letting each state devise its own health care system would likely mean that those people with health problems and/or low incomes would move away from "free-market" states and to states which are more compassionate, more Jesus-like.

That would work well for the selfish. I can see why they like the idea. They could always give their hired help a bus ticket to another state if they get ill.

As for hydrogen and fuel cells, I hope they soon offer a cheaper option to petroleum and internal combustion engines. That would mean that for those applications where batteries won't deliver we'd have an acceptable carbon-free option. Range extending fuel cell trailers or 'limpets' could make EVs much more usable.

But I'm betting higher capacity batteries and even faster Level 3 charging get there first. Nissan is now talking about ten minute rapid charges....

Roger Pham

Well, Bob, Massachusetts started with ObamaCare-style system since 2006. Do we see anybody rushing to Massachusetts? Instead, they are coming to Texas in droves for job opportunities, the state that offers the least in term of welfare and gov. assistance. The following is an assessment of MassaCare 2006-2011:

"The landmark Massachusetts Health Care Reform law is
responsible for a dramatic increase in health care spending over the period since it was enacted. The law did not bring about a promised reduction in
health care expenditures. Rather, it permitted the state legislature and governor to expand health insurance coverage to almost all residents, while
imposing more than $8 billion in new health care costs to the federal government and on state residents and businesses.
" Perhaps enough to drive many businesses away!
See complete report:

Health care assistance should not be in an open-ended fashion like health insurance without limit on utilization (ObamaCAre: no limit on insurance dollar coverage yearly nor lifetime dollar limit). It should have a finite budget yearly, depending on the the State's revenue, without going into deficit.

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