Invisible Markets: Mercedes-Benz Launches Hydrogen-powered GLC F-Cell

Mercedes-Benz says it has begun deliveries of the GLC F-Cell, a battery-electric vehicle that can run on hydrogen or a stored electrical charge. That would make it the most sensible hydrogen vehicle currently in existence, which isn’t saying much.

At any rate, it doesn’t really matter because you’ll probably never see one.

The GLC F-Cell is currently bound for government agencies in Germany, likely to be utilized for green posturing. After that, it rolls out to select corporate fleets before becoming available, as a rental, to Germans in highly specific markets — you know, the scant few with hydrogen infrastructures already in place.

We’re not exactly crippled to learn we’ll never have access to another fuel cell vehicle, but it’s a shame Daimler is going to leave those absolutely gorgeous 80s-era graphics emblazoned across the doors in Europe.

Mercedes first showcased the fuel-cell SUV at the Frankfurt Motor Show last year. Intended as a followup to the B-Class F-Cell — which is now almost a decade old — Benz claims its holding tanks is sufficient for 267 miles of hydrogen-only range, or just under 300 miles on a fully charged battery, using the NEDC test cycle. While it’s nice to see Daimler continuing to progress as a member of Hydrogen Mobility Europe, it seems like a pointless waste of the EU’s funds, given the complete absence of demand for these cars among the general public.

Still, the automaker isn’t giving up on the technology. As part of its joint venture with H2 Mobility, Mercedes says it wants to double the number of hydrogen fueling stations in Germany by the end of 2019. Unfortunately, this only means an additional 50 stations — explaining why the company is being so selective about the GLC F-Cell’s availability.

[Images: Mercedes-Benz]

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