BMW and Toyota Lay Out Three Point Advanced Technologies Venture

BMW Series 1 Fuel Cell

BMW Group and Toy­ota Motor Corp. signed bind­ing agree­ments last week on a major green tech­nol­o­gy joint ven­ture. To meet­ing their strate­gic tar­get of devel­op­ing advanced tech­nolo­gies to pow­er clean vehi­cles, the two glob­al automak­ers . Fuel cell vehi­cles are play­ing the lead­ing role in the project…

Design­ing com­po­nents for fuel cell vehi­cles – Toy­ota and BMW say they believe fuel-cell cars will play a key role in the push to elim­i­nate harm­ful auto emis­sions. The cost and size of fuel-cell stacks is com­ing down, while the dri­ving ranges are grow­ing longer. The joint ven­ture between the two com­pa­nies includes devel­op­ment of a fuel-cell vehi­cle sys­tem, includ­ing the fuel cell stack, hydro­gen tank, motor and bat­tery by 2020.

Cre­at­ing light­weight mate­ri­als and tech­nolo­gies – BMW and Toy­ota have under­tak­en a fea­si­bil­i­ty study to define a joint plat­form for a mid-size sports vehi­cle that is to be com­plet­ed by the end of 2013. They’ll also be explor­ing joint devel­op­ment of light­weight tech­nolo­gies.

Devel­op­ing next-gen­er­a­tion lithi­um bat­ter­ies – expands the scope of the project a year after the two com­pa­nies agreed to work togeth­er on lithi­um-ion bat­ter­ies. Joint research will be done to devel­op a lithi­um-air bat­tery with ener­gy den­si­ty great­ly exceed­ing that of cur­rent lithi­um-ion bat­ter­ies.

The grow­ing part­ner­ship between the two automak­ers is bound to inspire oth­er car com­pa­nies to con­sid­er alliances to pool their resources, said Jere­my Anwyl, CEO of Edmunds.com. “Fuel-cell cars are a more ele­gant solu­tion, and there’s real progress being made,” Anwyl said. “This bat­tery issue may be a detour on the way to a fuel-cell future.”

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