Toyota to license fuel-cell technology to BMW - Nikkei

By Samuel Kwon

Jan 22, 2013 02:17 PM EST

Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corp is nearing an agreement to license its fuel-cell vehicle technology to Germany's BMW AG BMWG.DE, the Nikkei reported.

Under the agreement, to be made official as early as Thursday, Toyota will provide the world's largest premium carmaker with drivetrain and hydrogen storage technology, the business daily said.

BMW will use the technology to build a prototype vehicle by 2015, with plans for a market release around 2020, the Nikkei said.

Fuel cells convert a fuel, typically hydrogen, into electricity, which can then be used to power cars and trucks.

Fuel-cell vehicles can run five times longer than battery electric cars on a single power-up, and it takes just minutes to fill the tank with hydrogen, compared with 8 hours or so to recharge a battery.

Rivals like Daimler AG, General Motors Co, Nissan Motor Co, Honda Motor Co and Hyundai Motor Co are all competing to develop fuel-cell vehicles, the daily said.

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