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Hydrogen vehicles use hydrogen fuel cells instead of conventional fuel. This fuel cell converts chemical energy into electrical energy. Increasing environmental concerns of government bodies to reduce the emissions of harmful gases and increasing the adoption of technological advancements are likely to foster the growth of the hydrogen vehicle market during the forecast period.

Lack of conventional fuel sources along with concerns regarding growing carbon footprint is fuelling the growth of the global hydrogen vehicle market

Factors driving the growth of the global market include increasing CO2 emissions in conjunction with stringent regulations being formulated to control the emission of such harmful gases. Hydrogen vehicles are responsible for controlling the CO2 emission, as hydrogen combines with oxygen in the fuel cell to produce water, which is a clean by-product. Hydrogen vehicles are eco-friendly, thus the demand for these vehicles is increasing, in turn, boosting the growth of the hydrogen vehicles market.

Furthermore, stringent government regulations towards controlling the carbon emissions from vehicles are another factor expected to increase the demand for hydrogen vehicles during the forecasted period. Regulations such as Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) III, Tier 3, and Super Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle (SULEV) regulations are being implemented in order to ensure the least carbon emissions. The adoption of hydrogen vehicles is increasing, as these vehicles offer enhanced power and fuel-efficiency. Thus, fuelling the growth of the global hydrogen vehicle market.

Reduction in prices of the hydrogen cell is expected to drive market growth in the near future

Reducing fuel cell prices is a key driving factor of the global hydrogen vehicles market. In the present market scenario, fuel cell manufacturing companies are investing in new technologies to help reduce the overall cost of hydrogen fuel cells. For instance, in September 2017, Nisshinbo Holdings Inc., introduced the carbon alloy catalyst for the replacement of platinum catalysts, as the cost of platinum is higher than carbon alloys. This, in turn, helps reduce the overall price of the hydrogen fuel cell. For instance, According to the U.S. Department of Energy, a single fuel-cell vehicle requires US$ 3,650 for catalyst materials, which accounts for 40-45% of the cost of the cell's internal components. Platinum is sold for US$ 36.35 (4,000 yen) per gram. Therefore, manufacturers are developing new catalysts for hydrogen vehicles which in turn, is fuelling the growth of the global hydrogen vehicle market.

The high initial investment for developing infrastructure is one of the key challenges for the growth of the global hydrogen vehicle market

The cost required for developing the infrastructure for manufacturing hydrogen vehicles is significantly high. The initial investment by manufactures is thus high, which in turn, poses as a major factoring hampering the growth of the global hydrogen vehicles market.

Global Hydrogen Vehicle Market Taxonomy

On the basis of vehicle type, the global hydrogen vehicle market is classified into:

  • Commercial
  • Passengers
  • Others

On the basis of technology, the global hydrogen vehicle market is classified into:

  • Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell
  • Alkaline Fuel cell
  • Solid Oxide Fuel Cell

On the basis of regions, the global hydrogen vehicle market is classified into:

  •    North America
  • Europe
  • Asia Pacific
  • Latin America
  • Middle East
  • Africa

Global Hydrogen Vehicle Market: Regional Insights

The market for the Asia Pacific accounted for the largest share in 2018 and this region is expected to retain its dominance during the forecast period. The increasing adoption of hydrogen fuel cells in emerging economies such as India and China is driving the growth of the market. Owing to the rise in industrialization and commercialization and the growing working-class population in these economies is increasing the overall disposable income of individuals. As per the International Monetary Fund (IMF) GDP growth trend, the economic activities in advanced and emerging economies increased by 3.1% in 2017 from 2016. This, in turn, is expected to increase the purchasing power of consumers, thus propelling growth of the hydrogen vehicles market. Moreover, the increasing government regulations to reduce emissions from vehicles is further expected to boost the demand for hydrogen fuel cells. For instance, according to the European Union, EU Regulation No 443/2009 sets an average CO2 emission target for new passenger cars of 130 grams/kilometer. A target of 95 grams/kilometer will be applicable from 2021. These factors, in turn, are expected to propel the growth of the regional market.

Global Hydrogen Vehicle Market: Key Players

Major players operating in the global hydrogen vehicle market include Toyota Motor Corporation, Hyundai Motor Company, Honda Motor Co. Ltd., Daimler AG., Audi, BMW, General Motors, MAN, Ford Motor Company, and VOLVO. Major players are adopting partnership strategies to expand their business in the hydrogen vehicles market. For instance, in June 2012, Toyota Motor Corporation entered into a partnership agreement with BMW in order to meet the growing demand for hydrogen fuel cells. This factor helps in gaining a competitive edge in the global hydrogen vehicle market.

Global Hydrogen Vehicle Market: Key Developments

  • In January 2018, Hyundai Motor Company, South Korean multinational automotive manufacturer, announced the launch of its hydrogen-powered SUV “Hyundai Nexo” which will deliver 800-km drive range at Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
  • In April 2019, Hydrogen Denmark, Danish industry association, announced a launch of eight new fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV) taxis, “Toyota Mirai taxis” which will transport passengers sustainably around the Copenhagen area.
  • In April 2019, Robert Bosch GmbH, German-based multinational engineering, and Technology Company and Powercell Sweden AB, a subsidiary of carmaker Volvo, has signed an agreement to jointly mass-produce hydrogen fuel cells for the automotive segment. According to this agreement, these companies will make polymer-electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells under the agreement for mass production.


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