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What does it cost?
Based on the Hyundai ix35 SUV, prices for the new hydrogen car start at £53,105, and for the cost you benefit from a 100kW fuel cell of hydrogen capacity in two tanks, a 100mph top speed and a range of 404 miles.
Available to order now from Hyundai dealerships, the new ix35 Fuel Cell comes with a headline price that’s inclusive of a substantial £15,000 government incentive known as HyFive, a scheme aimed at seeing 110 hydrogen-powered vehicles deployed on European roads.
Apart from a slightly smaller boot, the ix35 looks like any other conventional car, but under the bonnet it sports a completely new concept. The front wheels are driven by a 65kW electric motor which produces the equivalent of 87.2bhp, and there’s a fuel cell stack capable of converting hydrogen gas into electricity. Boot space is reduced by two gas tanks – a smaller 40-litre unit in front, and a 104-litre tank behind the rear axle.
How does it drive?
To drive, the ix35 is similar to any other electric car – its quiet, smooth and effortless, and refinement is nothing short of excellent. Hyundai claims the Fuel Cell is capable of managing up to 350 miles on a full tank of hydrogen before refuelling is required. The company compares the driving experience to that of a conventional ix35 SUV meaning it should achieve 0-62mph in 12.5 seconds with a top speed of 100mph.
We wouldn’t advise getting hold of an ix35 just yet – there’s currently only 14 operational hydrogen filling stations in the UK, with the network only slowly growing. There are 3 refuelling stations in London with a further 3 stations planned to be introduced in London and 1 in the Outer Hebrides islands by the end of the year as part of the HyFive project. However, northern England and most of Scotland have no filling stations planned in the foreseeable future.
Furthermore, the price of the new Fuel Cell car is extremely high, even with the £15,000 government grant included. In comparison, electric-car buyers currently benefit from a £5,000 plug-in car grant – significantly reducing the initial purchase price.