Solar and hydrogen powered cars show promise at electronics show debut

We’re all familiar with hybrid cars that run on a combination of energy and gasoline. But when will the next generation of energy efficient cars make its way to our nation’s highways? Earlier this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, two cars debuted that take the idea of hybrid energy to the next level, using solar and hydrogen power.

Ford unveiled the C-Max Solar Energi, an experimental solar-hybrid car that is powered by a combination of gasoline and solar panels on the car’s roof. The car’s battery can be fully charged with 7 hours of sunlight, but will take you just 21 miles before the gas powered engine has to kick in.

The C-Max Solar Energi is a prototype and the 21-mile range off a fully charged battery comes with a laundry list of stipulations. First, the car must be parked facing east-west, and under a specially made glass awning that magnifies the sun’s rays. The car must also inch forward throughout the day to keep up with the moving sun; without moving the car to maximize solar exposure the fully charged battery will only take you 3 miles. While the C-Max Solar Energi is still years away from seeing showroom floors, Toyota’s new hydrogen powered car is set to hit California markets sometime in 2015.

Electric cars like the Nissan Leaf and the Chevy Volt get their juice by plugging into a power outlet in your house, but what about plugging your house into your car for electricity? Toyota is developing a mechanism that allows you to connect your house to their hydrogen car that will reportedly have the ability to power your home for up to a week in an emergency situation.

Toyota’s engine works by combining hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity and water; the water is expelled and the electricity used to power the car. One hydrogen fill-up takes 3-5 minutes, and will take the car 300 miles at a max speed of 100 mph. While Toyota’s green machine is closer to seeing the light of day than the C-Max Solar Energi, it has its own set of obstacles to overcome: The lack of hydrogen fueling stations in the US; and the cost it to produce a hydrogen-powered car.

Need more news about green and good? Download this free digital issue of our last magazine.

Photo: Courtesy of Ford

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Solar and hydrogen powered cars show promise at electronics show debut

We’re all familiar with hybrid cars that run on a combination of energy and gasoline. But when will the next generation of energy efficient cars make its way to our nation’s highways? Earlier this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, two cars debuted that take the idea of hybrid energy to the next level, using solar and hydrogen power.

Ford unveiled the C-Max Solar Energi, an experimental solar-hybrid car that is powered by a combination of gasoline and solar panels on the car’s roof. The car’s battery can be fully charged with 7 hours of sunlight, but will take you just 21 miles before the gas powered engine has to kick in.

The C-Max Solar Energi is a prototype and the 21-mile range off a fully charged battery comes with a laundry list of stipulations. First, the car must be parked facing east-west, and under a specially made glass awning that magnifies the sun’s rays. The car must also inch forward throughout the day to keep up with the moving sun; without moving the car to maximize solar exposure the fully charged battery will only take you 3 miles. While the C-Max Solar Energi is still years away from seeing showroom floors, Toyota’s new hydrogen powered car is set to hit California markets sometime in 2015.

Electric cars like the Nissan Leaf and the Chevy Volt get their juice by plugging into a power outlet in your house, but what about plugging your house into your car for electricity? Toyota is developing a mechanism that allows you to connect your house to their hydrogen car that will reportedly have the ability to power your home for up to a week in an emergency situation.

Toyota’s engine works by combining hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity and water; the water is expelled and the electricity used to power the car. One hydrogen fill-up takes 3-5 minutes, and will take the car 300 miles at a max speed of 100 mph. While Toyota’s green machine is closer to seeing the light of day than the C-Max Solar Energi, it has its own set of obstacles to overcome: The lack of hydrogen fueling stations in the US; and the cost it to produce a hydrogen-powered car.

Need more news about green and good? Download this free digital issue of our last magazine.

Photo: Courtesy of Ford

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