In early 2017 at the Davos World Economic Forum, Hyundai Motor Company joined the launch of the Hydrogen Council, a global initiative to promote the development and commercialization of fuel cell cars as an alternative to fossil fuel vehicles. This follows two decades at the forefront of hydrogen vehicle development, most recently with the ix35 Fuel Cell (Tucson Fuel Cell in some markets), which in 2013 became the world’s first mass-produced hydrogen-powered vehicle, and is currently on sale in 17 countries around the world.
Woong Chul Yang, Vice Chairman of Hyundai Motor Company, said:
“Hyundai Motor has a heritage of building innovative, fuel-efficient vehicles that advance the automotive industry’s environmental progress. 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.”
The FE Fuel Cell Concept continues Hyundai Motor’s commitment to fuel cell vehicle development and is part of the company’s eco-vehicle program that will see 14 or more new environmentally-focused models introduced by 2020. Spurred on by greater global demand for fuel-efficient, eco-friendly vehicles, the program continues the example of innovation set by IONIQ, the first car to offer a choice of three electrified powertrains in a single body type.
The FE Fuel Cell Concept’s flowing form is inspired by nature and water – the car’s only emission – with the clean and calm design emphasizing its non-polluting nature. Across the car, form follows function to deliver a minimalist style. Exemplifying this approach, the FE Concept features a dramatic and stylish rear air foil and integrated vents that provide aerodynamic efficiency through intelligent engineering.
The concept’s name ‘FE’ stands for Future Eco, reflecting the innovative new technologies that complement the car’s eco-friendliness – a recognition of its unique fuel source. One of the most notable characteristics of the new concept is its internal air humidifier, which recycles water emitted by the car’s clean hydrogen energy circulation to create a more comfortable cabin environment.
The FE Concept showcases Hyundai Motor’s fourth generation of hydrogen fuel cell technology, an evolution of research, development and real-world evaluation programs around the world. When compared with the current generation system used in the Tucson ix35 Fuel Cell, the new technology is 20% lighter, and achieves 10% greater efficiency. In addition, the power density of the fuel cell stack is increased by 30%, boosting the car’s range significantly.
As another reinforcement of the car’s eco-credentials and focus on customer convenience, the FE Concept features portable battery packs – charged by the car’s energy output – to power passenger devices. Meanwhile, the trunk features an integrated storage and charging space for an electric scooter, demonstrating how Hyundai Motor is developing mobility solutions to match future lifestyles.
The new concept car is more than simply beautiful and innovative; it is highly capable too. The car is designed to run for more than 800 kilometers between refueling, acknowledging the current limited hydrogen infrastructure. Elements of the FE Fuel Cell Concept will influence an SUV Fuel Cell model set for launch in 2018, which will feature advanced ‘Hyundai Smart Sense’ driver assistance technologies, alongside an extensive hydrogen-powered range.