Hyundai banks on hydrogen fuel-cells

Hyundai wants to retake the lead when it comes to mass-produced hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles.

Geneva Motor Show fuel-cell concept by Hyundaiv
Geneva Motor Show fuel-cell concept by Hyundai

The Korean automaker told Bloomberg News that it will unveil a hydrogen-powered SUV that will have a great driving range than vehicles offered by Toyota and Honda.

The plan is to show off the new model next year during the winter Olympics, along with a hydrogen-powered bus.

But before that, Hyundai is set to show off prototype SUV with a range of 800 kilometres on a tank of hydrogen at the Seoul Motor Show.

Geneva Motor Show fuel-cell concept by Hyundai
Geneva Motor Show fuel-cell concept by Hyundai

Hyundai fell behind Toyota for hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles because of poor infrastructure in Korea, Bloomberg says.

“We want to lead the changes in terms of technology,” Kim Sae-hoon, who oversees the technology at Hyundai and Kia Motors, told Bloomberg. “When there is industrial restructuring and emergence of new technologies, it gives a new opportunity to us.” Hyundai has sold far fewer of its ix35 cars (242) when compared with the Toyota Mirai (2,050), in large part to the lack of hydrogen fuelling stations in Korea vs. Japan.

But Korea, in August, launched a plan that calls for 10,000 fuel-cell vehicles on the country’s roads and setting up 100 fuelling stations by 2020.

According to Bloomberg, Hyundai and Kia want to offer 28 eco-friendly models by 2020. That would include a Kia fuel-cell car and a Genesis electric vehicle.

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