How Ford’s Solar C-Max Compares to Fuel Cell Concepts

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C-MAXSolarEnergi_09_HRAt the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, both Ford (NYSE:F) and Toyota (NYSE:TM) showed off their respective solutions to vehicle emissions and dependence on foreign-sourced petroleum. Ford has a promising concept with its solar-powered car, considering the Toyota fuel-cell vehicle depends on hydrogen stations becoming a part of the landscape — something that’s a stretch even in California, home to the most pro-environmental policy in the U.S.

Powering electric motors 

The debate over electric vehicles being favorable to gasoline-powered automobiles can sometimes fail to acknowledge the source of the power in question. U.S. Department of Energy studies indicate fossil-fuel electricity sources do not deliver significant savings in carbon emissions when compared to gas-powered cars. However, since electricity is derived from numerous sources in the United States, electric cars typically deliver lower emissions than traditional vehicles. Another aspect of the equation is the source of the energy.

Since the U.S. produces nearly its entire electricity supply on its own, the nation could avoid the trappings of imported oil by transitioning from gas to electric vehicles. Both the Toyota FCV and Ford C-Max Solar Energi concept provide solutions to powering electric motors in their respective vehicles.

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