Hyundai recently unveiled its first hydrogen fuel cell car Tucson ix35 in Sydney and opened Australia’s only hydrogen vehicle refueling station at its Macquarie Park headquarters.
This latest presentation isn’t a first as the Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell arrived in Australia in June 2014.
“It is the first hydrogen-powered car to be permanently based in Australia and it has been undergoing operational trials in the lead up to today’s announcement.
The arrival of the first test vehicle and the commissioning of Australia’s only hydrogen refueling station are pioneering steps toward the commercial availability of emissions-free hydrogen powered vehicles in Australia.”
Korean manufacturer binds FCVs with long-term Australian plans and is considering a ‘Hydrogen Highway’ between Melbourne and Sydney.
Hyundai announced also that the next generation of Hyundai’s FCEV is targeted for introduction by 2018.
Hyundai Motor Company Australia CEO, Mr Charlie Kim said:
“We are taking a bold step into the future and we hope other Australians become as inspired and excited by this technology as we are,”.
“In February 2013, Hyundai Motor Company became the first automobile manufacturer in the world to begin mass-production of a hydrogen-powered vehicle – the ix35 Fuel Cell. The fact that we have brought one to Australia is testament to how important the Australian market is to Hyundai, and how seriously we take our environmental responsibility.”
“Because of the way we build our ix35 Fuel Cells, Hyundai Australia has the ability to order these incredible cars in the same way as we order any new Hyundai cars. We hope to work with governments on all levels to make the technology more widespread.”
Hydrogen for the first station is supplied by gas partner Coregas Australia, but soon Hyundai will launch its own production on site by building an electrolyser and harnessing solar power.
The ix35 Fuel Cell can go up to 594 km (370 miles) and is powered by 100 kW / 300 Nm electric motor 0-62 takes 12.5 seconds, while top speed stands at 100 mph.
Interesting is though that the ix35 Fuel Cell’s hydrogen tank is ready for 700 bar (10,000PSI), while the first station in Australia has just 350bar (5,000PSI) compressor. This will translate to range lower by 50% as you can’t fill the tank to its maximum capability!
“Q: What is the specification of HMCA’s hydrogen refueller?
A: It is a 350bar refueller made by Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. of Allentown, Pennsylvania.
We can provide full details of the unit if required. Note that refueling at 350bar instead of 700bar will mean our vehicle will have a range of approximately 300km – ample to demonstrate its capabilities.”
And there is info on long-term plans:
“Q: Why are you doing this? What is the long-term plan?
A: Although we are fascinated by the potential of a large-scale hydrogen transport network in Australia, we are – first and foremost – a vehicle manufacturer and an advocate of the technology.
We were first to mass-produce a hydrogen car and we will remain at the forefront of this technology. However, it is up to governments and other interested parties to plan and construct a hydrogen transport infrastructure for the future.
We at Hyundai think there is great potential for the future with hydrogen in Australia, but we cannot fund or plan infrastructure on our own. Overseas examples would seem to show the benefits clearly, and, as in other parts of the world, Hyundai will assist with partnerships in every way possible.
Over the past two years, we at Hyundai Australia have spoken with just about every major hydrogen infrastructure manufacturer in the world and studied hydrogen projects in California, Germany, the UK and Scandinavia.
In October last year we attended hydrogen infrastructure project meetings in Paris to learn how cooperative projects operate with the support of Governments, car makers and infrastructure manufacturers.
Could a ‘Hume by Hydrogen’ highway be built by 2020? Of course. The potential is there for hydrogen highways and for even more ambitious plans to power remote communities using solar and hydrogen technology – such schemes could include completely emissions-free transport built in, with the capability to use hydrogen to store energy for when it’s most needed.
Over the past two years, discussions have been held with global infrastructure manufacturers, with one even showing interest in manufacturing the hydrogen stations in Australia – a great way to create engineering and manufacturing jobs here.
Hyundai Motor Company Australia is committed to hydrogen technology, but it will only work if vehicle and infrastructure manufacturers work together with businesses and Governments to start planning for a greener future today”