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Mazda rotary hydrogen hits Norwegian roads

high road: Hydrogen-powered RX-8 rotary hits the road in Norway.

Mazda extends hydrogen-powered RX-8 rotary testing outside Japan for the first time

20 Oct 2008

MAZDA Motor Corporation (MMC) has taken its hydrogen-fuelled rotary engine development program outside Japan for the first time, announcing that the Mazda RX-8 Hydrogen RE has hit Norwegian roads as the company works towards widescale hydrogen car production next decade. As GoAuto reported last week, Mazda plans to put its hydrogen-powered rotary engine into mass production in around five years’ time. The latest project follows Mazda’s signing of an agreement with the Norwegian government’s national hydrogen project HyNor (Hydrogen Road of Norway) in November last year. For the time being, the project involves driving performance validation with a single RX-8 Hydrogen RE, although in Mazda’s fiscal year 2009 it will deliver around 30 additional units under commercial lease contracts.

22 center imageLeft: Akihiro Kashiwagi (Mazda's hydrogen RE program manager), Johan Thoresen(HyNor Chairman).



“Up to now, real-world use of Mazda’s hydrogen rotary vehicles has been limited to Japan. Participation in the HyNor project marks our advancement to the next stage,” said MMC program manager in charge of hydrogen RE (rotary engine) development, Akihiro Kashiwagi. “Mazda plans to use the wealth of data and experience that will result from this project for the further development of hydrogen vehicles.” HyNor demonstrates the implementation of a hydrogen energy infrastructure, including hydrogen refuelling stations, along a 580km route from Oslo to Stavanger.

Since April 2006, Mazda has delivered eight RX-8 Hydrogen RE vehicles to government bodies and “enterprises” in Japan under commercial lease contracts.

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