BMW hydrogen breakthrough, with model coming in 2020
Your future car will run on water (but drive on the road).
During the Tokyo Motor Show last week, BMW revealed their future project: a hydrogen fuelled car. And what sparked this new venture? After a couple of years researching, the German carmakers have had a breakthrough in hydrogen technology.
The luxury car brand has found a way to enable fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) to have an increased mileage range. BMW say that once the compression technique, which involves hydrogen compression at very low temperatures to create more storage volume, is perfected, the FCV should be able to achieve a huge 435miles before needing a refill.
BMW has been working closely with world car sales leader Toyota to master the hydrogen technology. Using their fuel cell stack base, BMW have managed to create the technology that will eventually power a vehicle. Although the two companies are working together, they aren’t planning a collaboration vehicle any time soon, as their target markets differ too much.
Head of fuel cell development at BMW, Merten Jung told the audience at the TMS, “We don’t have a model yet, but… as the character of our technology favours larger cars, our model will probably be something like a long distance car, a larger sedan.”
He also told reporters that they’re planning to have a model ready for 2020. The likes of Toyota and Honda have already released hydrogen-powered vehicles into the market, but the technology is still in its early days.
The technology is excellent for emissions standards, as it produces zero of them, but it’s also incredibly expensive. The parts required are costly, as is the time and resources going into the technology development. These factors have put off many manufacturers and as it stands, there are only around 15 hydrogen refuelling stations in the whole of the UK.
Maybe by 2020 the technology will be used wider within the industry, but be prepared for a hefty price tag… after all, it is a BMW.