Hyundai plans to develop a second generation hydrogen fueled SUV, capable to go for 500 miles without additional refill.
As alternatively fueled vehicles become more and more common, carmakers from around the world start putting their best efforts into grabbing a consistent piece of the new pie and Hyundai is no exception. Built as a rival for Toyota’s Mirai, the ix35 SUV from the Korean carmaker Hyundai had one major downfall, namely the fact that it was based on an already existing model, which was simply equipped with hydrogen fuel cells. The decision to take this route was closely linked with Hyundai’s promise that they will put on sale a hydrogen power car during 2015 and they succeeded on this aspect. On the other hand, the Japanese Mirai sported a customized design, created especially for the new power system, which offered customers an entirely new experience.
Hyundai obviously learned from the experience and announced it intends to put together a brand new hydrogen fueled SUV, with a focus on design. Sae-Hoon Kim, Hyundai-Kia’s head of hydrogen fuel cell research, declared in a recent interview that: “We will launch a dedicated vehicle, although it is not clear what vehicle type it will be based around.”
There are rumors that the bodystyle to be chosen by Hyundai will be classical for an SUV, which will allow the Korean carmaker to use this particular model as a starting point for a whole range of future eco-friendly vehicles. Kim also stated that Hyundai is looking at ideas from the aerospace industry to help them with finding a compromise between range and vehicle interior space and size of the fuel tank: “Our issue is that all customer feedback says range and boot space are the priorities, but of course a larger fuel tank impinges on boot space.” During the same interview, Kim claimed that the new ix35 FCV will have an autonomy of 500 miles, compared to 375 miles the old version, being able to reach 110 mph as opposed to only 100 mph the previous version.