- New Hyundai FCEV reveals solid design and improved capabilities
- Advanced fuel cell technology boosts range and performance
- New SUV will be officially unveiled early next year
AHEAD of an official launch early next year, we get a first glimpse of a new hydrogen-fuelled Hyundai FCEV.
We can’t tell you what it will be called because Hyundai won’t reveal the name until January. We can tell you a little bit about what will probably be a replacement for the ix35 Fuel Cell SUV though.
We can also tell you that FCEV stands for Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle.
The new model was revealed at a special event and is the second production model to incorporate hydrogen technology. The new car features significant improvements over the ix35 in terms of fuel efficiency and performance.
The new Hyundai FCEV SUV promises a 60% efficiency level compared to the 55% in the ix35. This is down to a combination of enhanced fuel cell performance, reduced hydrogen consumption, and optimising key components. That may not sound like a significant improvement but Hyundai says the new model should have a range of around 500 miles. That’s well into diesel territory.
Developments in hydrogen technology also mean the new Hyundai FCEV SUV develops 160bhp, around 30bhp more than the ix35. The new car won’t win any speed records but the extra power will make it more usable in everyday driving conditions.
This may not be a production car in the strictest sense but Hyundai is adamant that this is what it will look like when it goes on sale. It’s a slightly futuristic design but not excessively so. There are lots of words like “organic” and “flowing” used in relation to the new car. Aerodynamic efficiency was obviously important but we just think it looks really good.
The interior is also rather nice too. According to Hyundai the clean and simple layout will incorporate high-tech elements and should help create an ultramodern environment. Obviously we have no idea what the specification will be but expect it to be well equipped as standard.
Hyundai has readily embraced the electric revolution with the Ioniq range but maintain that hydrogen is the best option for cleaner motoring in the long term. The Korean manufacturer was the first to introduce a mass produced hydrogen vehicle and currently sells them in 18 countries around the world.
If costs can be reduced to the point where it’s possible to put hydrogen fuel cells in smaller vehicles and still charge a sensible price then they may have a point. The infrastructure is a big issue at the moment but resolve that problem and it’s entirely possible that hydrogen could be the answer.
The fuel source is abundant and the only emissions you get from a hydrogen fuel cell are safe to drink – so we’re told. Clean motoring at reduced cost is the dream of most sensible company car drivers.
Unless the government decides to charge company car drivers based on the amount of water coming out of their exhaust that is.