World’s first mass-produced hydrogen powered truck

hydrogen powered truck

Hyundai has announced that it has shipped seven of its XCIENT Fuel Cell trucks, the world’s first mass-produced hydrogen heavy-duty fuel cell truck.

Those first seven trucks have been sent to Switzerland, this location initially due to Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility, the vehicle company’s joint venture with Swiss company H2 Energy. Before the end of the 2020 fifty more XCIENT Fuel Cell trucks will have been shipped to Switzerland.

The Hyundai XCIENT truck is powered by a dual 95-kW hydrogen fuel cells. Seven large hydrogen tanks offer a combined storage capacity of around 34 kg of hydrogen. The engine has an output of 350 kW and the system is supplemented by a 73.2 kWh battery. All up, in a 34 ton truck and trailer configuration, with a refrigeration unit, this should produce a range of approximately 400 kilometres.

Also in Switzerland

Also to be finished in Switzerland by the end of 2020 are six hydrogen filling stations. Two are already in operation, in Hunzenschwil and St Gallen, with four more to follow by the end of this year in Rümlang, Zofingen, Berne and Crissier, covering the route from Lake Geneva north-east to Lake Constance. Filling stations in Rothenberg and Geuensee will be completed in early 2021. All of these filling stations will dispense green hydrogen.

“Switzerland’s private sector has created something that is truly unique. Many believed that the hydrogen industry would always remain a utopian vision of the future, but Switzerland is proving that electrically powered commercial vehicles and passenger cars can be refuelled with clean hydrogen and driven without CO2 emissions.” – Bertrand Piccard, President of the Solar Impulse Foundation

Elsewhere in the world

Hyundai’s production target of the XCIENT Fuel Cell is expected to reach 2,000 by the end of 2021, with trucks for the European, USA, and China. In the US Hyundai expects to have 12,000 fuel cell trucks on its roads by 2030.

‘The delivery of XCIENT Fuel Cell starts a new chapter not only for Hyundai’s hydrogen push, but also the global community’s use of hydrogen as a clean energy source,’ said In Cheol Lee, Executive Vice President and Head of Commercial Vehicle Division at Hyundai Motor.

Today’s delivery is just a beginning as it opens endless possibilities for clean mobility. With successful delivery of the first XCIENT Fuel Cell trucks, we proudly announce our plan to expand beyond Europe to North America and China where we are already making great progress.’

And Australia?

Unfortunately, due to the twin reasons of being a small, distant market, and the even more niche fact of requiring trucks here to be right-hand drive, it’s not at this stage anticipated that Australia will see the XCIENT Fuel Cell trucks on our roads until after 2025.

Interview with the head of Hyundai’s Fuel Cell Center

For more about this announcement, and about Hyundai’s hydrogen strategy, watch this interview with Sae Hoon Kim, head of Hyundai’s Fuel Cell Center.

As he points out right at the start of this interview with Bloomberg Asia, ‘The fuel cell is a present-day reality, not a technology for the future.’

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