It’s becoming clear that gasoline-powered vehicles are going to become a thing of the past and vehicles are going to be powered by alternative fuels in the future. Apart from vehicles that are powered by electricity, which are already quite popular, there are also vehicles that use hydrogen as a source of energy. Electric vehicles have been around for a while now, with the Nissan Leaf, the Tesla Model S and the Chevy Volt as the most popular cars of their kind currently, but hydrogen vehicles were introduced pretty recently. So far, all of those hydrogen fueled cars have been concept cars, and no car maker has been able to start mass production of such vehicles. Examples of hydrogen car concepts include the Ford Focus FCV, the GM Sequel, and the Honda FCX. However, South Korean car manufacturer Hyundai recently introduced the Tucson ix35, the first mass-produced hydrogen vehicle.
The Hyundai Tucson ix35 Fuel Cell
The Tucson ix35 is an SUV, which is built on the Tucson platform, a compact crossover that was first introduced in 2004. It is powered by hydrogen, which is stored in a tank that is pressurized to 700 bar. 12.3 pounds can be stored in the tank, and the car has a 369 miles range per tank. A modular stack generates electricity, which is used by the electric motor. The motor provides 134 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque. The Tucson ix35 can accelerate from 0-60 mph in 12 seconds, and it reaches a 99 mph top speed. While it doesn’t have spectacular performances, this hydrogen vehicle should attract consumers with its efficiency and the fact that it’s an incredibly eco-friendly car. Hyundai hopes to sell at least 1,000 units of the Tucson ix35 Fuel Cell by 2015. As far as the price is concerned, Hyundai hasn’t officially announced it, but it’s being speculated that it’s going to cost between $150,000 – $200,000.
The BMW Active E
The BMW Active E is a concept car, which is the second vehicle of this German car maker’s Project I. It’s a two-door coupe, that has a range of 94 miles. It has a 32 kWh lithium-ion battery, and an electric motor that produces 168 horsepower, along with 184 lb-ft of torque. The Active E is a rear-wheel-drive car, and it has a 1-speed electric drive transmission. The good thing about it is that it can be recharged using a standard socket. It can be fully recharged in 4-5 hours at a 230 V outlet. The latest news about the Active E is that BMW recently launched the “Electronaut Effect”, a tool that consumers can use to get information about the performances of the 700 Active E cars that are being used at the moment. The Electronaut Effect feature allows you to see how many miles the 700 cars have traveled since January 2012, when the BMW Active E Field Trial started. You can also see how much money was saved and what the cost per 100 miles is. BMW hopes that this feature will convince consumers of the car’s efficiency and the positive effect it has on the environment.