Hyundai has offered an early glimpse of its next generation fuel cell vehicle, well ahead of the hydrogen-powered SUV’s official launch early next year.
At a special preview event held in Seoul, the near-production-ready version exhibited its impressive capabilities while revealing its futuristic design. The yet-to-be-named model embodies Hyundai Motor’s commitment to a new era for advanced eco-friendly vehicle development.
Fourth generation fuel cell system
The new SUV shown at the special event previews Hyundai Motor’s second commercially produced hydrogen model and uses the company’s fourth generation of hydrogen fuel cell technology. The vehicle, its capabilities and fuel cell technologies are an evolution of Hyundai Motor’s global research, development and real-world evaluation programs. The new vehicle reinforces the company’s leadership in fuel cell-based electric-powertrain systems, created with expertise honed through the world’s first commercial production of a fuel cell vehicle in 2013.
The new fuel cell model was developed on four key pillars that focus on fuel cell system efficiency, performance (maximum output), durability, and tank storage density.
Hydrogen storage: The next generation hydrogen vehicle makes significant improvements in tank storage density. The tank package now features three equally-sized tanks, as opposed to two of different sizes. World-class tank gravimetric capacity (hydrogen storage mass per tank weight) was achieved through innovations to the plastic liner configuration and efficient layering pattern, which resulted in a reduction of thickness.
The mass-produced new vehicle will also feature advanced driver assistance technologies, alongside its extensive hydrogen-powered range. The details of the new ADAS features will be disclosed in January at the 2018 CES, along with the official model name.
Hydrogen Society within everyone’s reach
Hyundai Motor will also take part in the Hydrogen House, projected by the Seoul city government, displaying prototypes of the new fuel cell vehicle starting today until November 17 that will promote emission-free fuel cell vehicles and a Hydrogen Society. It is through initiatives like this that Hyundai Motor will demonstrate how a Hydrogen Energy Society could be realized in the not-too-distant future.
Hyundai Motor, the world’s first automaker to have introduced a mass production line for hydrogen fuel cell cars, has supplied fuel cell vehicles since 2013, and now sells them in 18 countries around the world. The company began researching fuel cell technology in 1998 and developed its first fuel cell vehicle based on the Santa Fe SUV, as part of a collaboration with CaFCP (California Fuel Cell Partnership).
Hyundai Motor will reveal the new hydrogen SUV early next year in Korea, followed by the North American and European markets. The company will also consider expanding availability of its new fuel cell model to markets with high growth potential for eco-friendly vehicles such as China.