As Elon Musk and his network of rapid-charging electric car stations march steadily across the U.S., another futuristic infrastructure is being proposed on the opposite side of the globe. In India, at the Auto Expo Motor Show, a new fuel cell mass-transit vehicle is about to be unveiled. Sometimes referred to as the "Millennium Tuk-Tuk," this new cab-like car is hoped to hit the roads of India by the million as soon as the year 2020.
Developed by Birmingham City University in the U.K., the new vehicle's design will remain a mystery until the grand unveiling later this week. However, it will likely be a doorless four-seater with a lightweight frame; smaller than the Toyota FCV pictured above. A hydrogen fuel cell will power its electric motor, which will be controlled and monitored by the vehicle's futuristic control system. Solar-powered "Hydrogen Tree" fuel stations, designed to look like trees, are to be built to refuel the million-plus new fuel cell vehicles.
The fuel cell infrastructure is expected to bring cheap hydrogen fuel not only to the new vehicles, but to residences as well, powering appliances and devices for the populace. In India, a nation whose rural populace lives largely without electric power, a fuel cell infrastructure could provide light and modern living for millions who currently live without. In such places, high-tech trees may soon produce electricity, leading to a bright, futuristic tomorrow.