'Dude, Where's My Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Car?'

Designing, engineering, testing, producing, and selling cars run by anything other than gasoline engines is hard, expensive, and challenging. Carmakers routinely lose money on the first generation of new technologies--Toyota, for example, with its first-generation Prius hybrid. But while hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery-electric cars have had a long and torturous path to market, there's one technology that's taken even longer: Hydrogen fuel-cell cars. In 1980, scientists, engineers, analysts, and executives predicted that in 1990, fuel-cell cars would start to reach volume production and appear on the world's roads. But as of the end of February of this year, fewer than 100 Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell crossovers have been leased in the U.S. Cars with plugs have been on sale in North America for almost four and a half years now, and today, there are roughly 20 different plug-in electric vehicles on sale in the U.S. Their total sales last year were roughly 118,500.