DaimlerChrysler Builds First Fuel Cell-powered Firefighter Vehicle
DaimlerChrysler has introduced the first fuel cell–powered fire response vehicle. The Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District will operate the Mercedes-Benz F-Cell as a supervisor's vehicle in the Sacramento area. Outfitted with decals, lights, sirens and a healthy coat of bright red paint, the Fire Service Mercedes-Benz F-Cell is a look into the future use of fuel cell vehicles. The demanding operation of the vehicle will produce valuable data to help develop fuel cell technology. The new fire response F-Cell joins the first fuel cell powered police car, also built by DaimlerChrysler, which operates in Michigan with the Wayne State University Police Department. These two vehicles are the first hydrogen fuel cell powered emergency response vehicles in the world.
"This program exhibits how DaimlerChrysler is taking on the challenge for industries and governments to create viable alternative-fuel solutions," said Mark Chernoby, Vice President – Advance Vehicle Engineering, Chrysler Group. "We're pleased to be a driving force in this team effort to develop zero-emissions transportation."
The Fire Service Mercedes-Benz F-Cell will be refueled at a BP Energy hydrogen refueling station located at the California Fuel Cell Partnership. Delivering hydrogen fuel cell vehicle experience to the fire service, the F-Cell contributes to the development of appropriate solutions for hydrogen transportation safety.
DaimlerChrysler has spent more than $1 billion in fuel cell vehicle research and development. No other manufacturer has accumulated more data or driven more zero-emissions miles — almost 2 million.
The DaimlerChrysler fuel cell vehicle fleet is diverse — in addition to several research vehicles, it also includes medium-duty fuel cell Dodge Sprinter vans and more than 35 Mercedes-Benz Citaro fuel cell buses, which operate in Europe, the United States, Japan, Australia and Singapore. As part of the world's largest fleet of fuel cell vehicles, DaimlerChrysler has 32 fuel cell vehicles in customer hands within the United States and more than 100 around the world. No other manufacturer comes close to the efforts of DaimlerChrysler with fuel cell technology.
The Mercedes-Benz F-Cell is a reflection of DaimlerChrysler's leadership in fuel cell technology. The entire fuel cell system is housed in the floor of the vehicle, leaving full use of the passenger and cargo spaces. It has a range of approximately 100 miles and a top speed of 85 mph. The electric motor develops 88 hp (65 kW), enabling acceleration from 0 to 60 mph in 16 seconds. The fuel cell stack has been developed by the DaimlerChrysler cooperation partner, Ballard Power Systems.
DaimlerChrysler supports Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's efforts and goals. His California Hydrogen Highway Network — in addition to other programs the company is involved with, including those with the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency — enables DaimlerChrysler and its partners to gain extensive operational familiarity with fuel cell vehicles and hydrogen refueling stations.
DaimlerChrysler pioneered fuel cell vehicle technology more than a decade ago. Fuel cells release energy from the reaction of hydrogen with a catalyst and oxygen. This clean technology operates at a high level of efficiency and is true zero-emissions. Hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicles emit only pure water vapor as exhaust. Fuel cell vehicles are part of DaimlerChrysler's advanced propulsion technology umbrella, which includes efficient gasoline engines, advanced diesels, Flex-Fuel and hybrid powertrain systems.