Hyundai will launch a hydrogen-powered fuel-cell tall wagon by 2020, whose drivetrain and platform are likely to be used on a new compact Kia tall wagon, reports alternate-fuel webmag Green Car Reports. Sae-Hoon Kim, head of fuel-cell research for Hyundai and its Kia brand, said Hyundai is aiming for a 500-mile range, which would likely translate to around 400 miles on the more stringent U.S. testing cycle. It will replace the current Tucson Fuel Cell with its 265-mile range. It could achieve that in part by using bigger hydrogen tanks; the automaker expects to make efficiency gains through a dedicated platform, allowing engineers to properly build the body around the powertrain, making greater allowances for functions such as cooling.
Making a new powertrain fit an existing vehicle, such as the Hyundai Tucson, has its merits and its problems. On the upside, there’s a ready-made car. On the downside, putting a hydrogen fuel stack into a restricted space has compromises.