Honda Advances Hydrogen Fuel Cell Technology with Semi Trucks

Honda remains dedicated to hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, despite their limited market, and is exploring new applications for fuel cell technology, including commercial trucks.

To showcase this potential, Honda has converted a semi truck to run on fuel-cell power, replacing the diesel engine with three fuel-cell modules. These modules, co-developed with General Motors, generate a combined 321 horsepower, enabling the truck to reach a top speed of 70 mph. Honda claims the truck can achieve a range of 400 miles with a full load, thanks to ample onboard hydrogen storage capacity.

The fuel-cell modules are more durable and cost one-third less than previous generations, and are currently manufactured at a joint venture factory in Michigan shared by Honda and GM. While the semi truck is currently a one-off prototype, Honda is actively seeking business collaborations in North America for fuel-cell technology.

Honda’s initiative follows other automakers’ efforts, including Toyota and Kenworth’s demonstration trucks in California ports and Hyundai’s plans to test fuel-cell semis in the same state. Additionally, GM has partnered with Navistar to produce 2,000 fuel-cell vehicles.

Fuel-cell vehicles offer advantages over battery-powered trucks, such as quick refueling times, which could make them more attractive for long-haul operations compared to battery-powered vehicles that require larger battery packs for extended range.

Honda views commercial trucks as a key focus area for fuel-cell technology, alongside stationary power sources, construction machinery, and passenger cars. For the latter, Honda recently introduced the 2025 CR-V e, a hybrid vehicle that combines fuel cells with a plug-in battery pack, following up on the Clarity Fuel Cell discontinued in 2021.

Both the CR-V eand its predecessor are exclusively available in California, where public hydrogen infrastructure is more developed. Honda hopes that increased use of hydrogen in sectors like semi trucks will drive demand and expand infrastructure, making fuel-cell vehicles more viable. Nonetheless, Honda continues to develop its 0 Series of battery-electric vehicles, set to debut in 2026, as an alternative pathway if hydrogen adoption remains limited.