It has been announced that residents of Herefordshire will be able to drive around in new hydrogen-powered cars in 2012. The futuristic vehicles are manufactured by Riversimple, which is based in Ludlow, and are being launched on the roads of Herefordshire next year, with ordinary drivers to be offered the chance of using the vehicles via a car leasing scheme. A fleet of no less than 30 of the hydrogen-powered vehicles will be available to be used in South Shropshire and North Herefordshire as a way of ensuring that the cars have been extensively tested under ordinary motoring conditions.
The vehicles are intended to be the forerunner to mass produced versions that could end up dominating the overseas market as well as in the United Kingdom. Hydrogen-powered cars are entirely clean, with the only emission being water that is actually pure enough to drink. The vehicles will come with a range of about 200 miles, the same as what is offered by an ordinary small petrol engine car, although one drawback is that at the moment there are only a very few places where they can be fuelled. It is expected that both Shropshire and Herefordshire will have such locations available before the scheme begins next year.
"These tiny cars represent the future," reckons "Top Gear" presenter Jeremy Clarkson. "Instead of running from electricity from the mains, it's produced by a chemical reaction within the car itself - a reaction that produces nothing but heat and water. This is the future."
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