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Hyundai Makes Room for Fuel Cell Power

October 11th, 2010 · No Comments

Hyundai has developed a second-generation fuel-cell electric vehicle (FCEV) based on its Tucson small SUV. Compared to the first-generation fuel- cell vehicle, the Tucson FCEV has an extended driving range and incorporates numerous technical advances, including a fuel cell from UTC Fuel Cells that operates at sub-zero temperatures, and a new high-voltage lithium-ion polymer battery.
The original Santa Fe hydrogen FCEV was developed in 2000 when the company teamed up with UTC Fuel Cells. In 2002, Hyundai added hybrid technology, and the driving range of the vehicle was extended from 160 to 185 km (100 to 115 mi) using the same amount of hydrogen. But much of the hybrid Santa Fe FCEV trunk space was occupied by the high-voltage dc/dc converter and hybrid battery. The goal for the new Tucson (and Kia Sportage) version was to integrate and improve the technology while maintaining the interior space of the conventionally powered version.
Unlike its predecessor, which featured an under-floor installation, the Tucson FCEV’s power plant is located in the front, under the hood. The driving range has been extended to 300 km (186 mi) thanks to its 152-L hydrogen storage tanks. Marginally lighter than its predecessor, the Tucson FCEV also gets an extra 5 kW of fuel-cell power for a peak output of 80 kW. Maximum speed is rated at 150 km/h (93 mph) compared to the Santa Fe’s 124 km/h (77 mph). Built with lightweight aluminum body components, the Tucson FCEV has a power-to-weight ratio similar to that of a conventional SUV.

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