2009 Tokyo Show: Suzuki SX4 FCV

An obvious point of collaboration between Suzuki and General Motors: the SX4 FCV uses the same fuel cell as GM vehicles but a hydrogen storage tank produced by Suzuki. The FCV also includes a capacitor that captures energy lost during braking to help the car accelerate later, much like traditional hybrid vehicles use regenerative braking.

The SX4 FCV is undergoing road testing in Japan, much like the Chevy Equinox FCVs are at home, to help determine if a business case can be made for such vehicles. This real world testing also gives Suzuki better understanding of the demands these vehicles will face if production and public sales become a reality.

Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles still seem like a pipe dream, but the ongoing research is clearly prudent on Suzuki’s part in case the infrastructure for hydrogen vehicles becomes a reality. Automakers can’t really afford to ignore any potential green powertrains, so expect to see plenty more exhibits with a traditional hybrid on one end of the stage and something more exotic under the next spotlight.