Hyundai unveils hydrogen vehicle concept with boosted driving range

As the transition to low-emission transport drives ahead, South Korean motor company Hyundia has reaffirmed its commitment to hydrogen fuel cell vehicles by unveiling a new concept car at the Geneva Motor Show.

Hyundai’s FE Fuel Cell Concept is the latest in the company’s eco-vehicle programme that will see at least 14 new “environmentally focused” vehicles introduced by 2020. As a hydrogen vehicle, water is the only tailpipe emission and integrated vents have also been designed to provide aerodynamic efficiency.

The vehicle has been fitted with internal air humidifiers, which recycles water emitted by the car. Fuel cell technology used in the vehicle has been classed as fourth generation and the cells are 20% lighter, and achieve a 10% improvement on efficiency compared to Hyundai’s Tuscon ix35 Fuel Cell. Driving range as also been significantly boosted by 30% to more than 800km without refuelling.

“Hyundai Motor has a heritage of building innovative, fuel-efficient vehicles that advance the automotive industry’s environmental progress,” Hyundai’s vice chairman, Woong Chul Yang said. “Our FE Fuel Cell Concept is an important evolution of our pioneering hydrogen leadership, and moves us closer to our vision for a ‘Hydrogen Society’, where transportation is clean, efficient and enhances the lives of our customers.”

Set for launch in 2018, the concept car features portable battery packs, which can be charged by the car’s energy output to power mobile passenger devices. The vehicle will also be fitted with “Hyundai Smart Sense” driver assistance and a storage and charging space in the trunk for electric scooters.

Hydrogen Council

Hyundai is part of the Hydrogen Council, a global initiative launched in Davos earlier this year to promote the commercialisation of fuel cell technology. Oil giant Shell is also a member of the Council and recently launched its first fully-branded hydrogen refuelling station in the UK. The Council will pledge $10.7bn towards hydrogen projects over the next five years.

The introduction of the Council creates additional momentum for a sector on the rise. Fuel cell industry shipments grew by two-thirds in 2016 – compared to 2015 levels – with transport-related fuel-cell capacity doubling to 280MW.

In order to push the agenda further, Hyundai’s UK chief executive Tony Whitehorn told edie that the Government can ignite a surge of public interest in electric and low-carbon vehicles by developing more infrastructure and implementing effective policy incentives that spark widespread behaviour change.

Hyundai’s commitment to low-emissions carbon spreads beyond the production of hydrogen vehicles. The company has vowed to circulate 26 new-fuel cars and SUVs into its production by 2020. Part of this pledge was the evolution of Hyundai’s Ioniq model, which is the world’s first car with three electrified powertrains. The Ioniq models were also on show at the Geneva Motor Show.

The Low-Carbon Vehicle Zone at edie Live 2017

The adoption of low-carbon vehicles for company cars and distribution fleets is gaining momentum which the edie Live 2017 exhibition is going to be housing a brand new Low-Carbon Vehicle Zone.

The Low-Carbon Vehicle Zone will showcase some of the latest technologies and solutions from an array of vehicle manufacturers and suppliers throughout the two days of edie Live 2017 at the NEC Birmingham on 23-24 May. 

Matt Mace

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