Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell Drives 435 Miles on a Tank of Hydrogen Fuel

Like a standard electric vehicle, the driving range of fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEV) has come into question since the technology has become more widespread in recent years. Looking to give a definitive answer to the possible driving range, Hyundai set out across Europe to see what sort of real-world results it could attain from its newly released zero-emission crossover, the ix35 Fuel Cell (known as the Tucson Fuel Cell in the U.S., shown above).
2014 Hyundai Tucson fuel cell 1 photo
Photo: Hyundai
Piloted by “eco-pioneers” who we presume are skilled hypermilers, the Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell managed to drive 700 kilometers (435 miles), which Hyundai says is a record for the longest journey on one tank of hydrogen fuel, across three countries with 10 miles left to spare on the trip computer. The stated range of the ix35 Fuel Cell is 594 km (369 miles), while the stated range for the U.S.-spec Tucson Fuel Cell is 265 miles.

The European journey started in Oslo, Norway and traveled through Gothenburg, Sweden and Copenhagen, Denmark before finishing in Malmö, Sweden with an average speed of 76 kilometers per hour (about 45 miles per hour). The journey seemed to be centered on a planned route to drive as far as possible while remaining close to hydrogen refueling stations.

According to one of the drivers, Marius Bornstein: “We had planned to finish in Copenhagen, but realized there was enough hydrogen left in the tank for a longer drive. When we arrived at the filling station in Malmö we still had a few kilometers of range remaining. To achieve this distance on just one tank of hydrogen shows the potential of this technology and the ability of the Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell. I believe this is a world record.”

Frank Meijer, the head of fuel cell electric vehicles at Hyundai Motor Europe, said: “The distance travelled by the ix35 Fuel Cell demonstrates the viability and real-world benefits of hydrogen fuel cell technology – it’s an electric vehicle with long-distance range. Hyundai Motor is the first automaker to mass-produce fuel cell vehicles, and we continue to promote the growth of Europe’s hydrogen refueling network.”

As for the claim of being the first automaker with a mass-produced fuel cell vehicle, Honda and the FCX Clarity might take issue with that, but it’s hard to argue with the results of this demonstration.

Hyundai delivered its first Tucson Fuel Cell in the U.S. last month. In the U.S., the Tuscon fuel cell is only offered to customers living in the Los Angeles are with 36-month leases that include $2,999 down and monthly payments of $499.
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