During and after the intense growth period of the economy in Japan around the 1960s, the number of fuel filling stations increased with the rapid spread of automobiles. However, two oil crises in the 1970s triggered the introduction of “next-generation vehicles.” Examples include battery electric vehicles (BEVs), compressed natural gas vehicles (CNGVs), and hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs). After the 1990s, CNGVs began to be introduced, and the development of BEVs and FCEVs accelerated. However, penetration of these next-generation vehicles was not fully successful, owing to their inferior performance (range, acceleration, durability, economic efficiency, and other factors) compared with conventional internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs) and a lack of infrastructure, e.g., insufficient CNG stations for CNGVs. Since around 2010, the introduction of next-generation vehicles has progressed gradually. The higher price and shorter cruising range relative to ICEVs has been improved, and their infrastructure has expanded. FCEVs are scheduled to be on the market in 2015, and their hydrogen infrastructure is also being developed. This study discusses next-generation vehicles’ fuel supply infrastructure, particularly its technical goals, challenges, and risks, and surveys Japan’s past approaches and efforts and future prospects.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Sciences(all)
- Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)
- Business, Management and Accounting(all)
- Chemical Engineering(all)