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Hydrogen Cars Take to Danish Roads

Hydrogen Cars Take to Danish Roads

The original Hyundai Motor Company, established 1967 in South Korea, has continued to successfully grow in size with more than two dozen auto related subsidiaries and affiliates. Now known as the Hyundai Motor Group it makes cars all around the world including in Europe. Last year, the company sold over four million vehicles worldwide and now it is branching out into the business of hydrogen powered vehicles.

One of its first customers is Denmark’s capital, Copenhagen – home to the TV show Borgen – and one of the more forward thinking cities of Europe. The Danes have just taken delivery of fifteen Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell SUV’s which will form part of their municipal fleet in pursuit of the city’s carbon-neutral objectives scheduled to be achieved by 2025.

The regular ix35 has been very well received and is a reliable, stylish, comfortable and versatile car. Even the entry level vehicles have heated front and rear seats as standard. This then seems like the ideal basis on which to build the hydrogen technology and the cars are the first with this fuel to be produced on a regular production line. This emphasises Hyundai’s commitment to this new power source. The delivery was made to coincide with the opening of Copenhagen’s first hydrogen filling station.

The ix35 Fuel Cell produces no emissions and only water vapour comes out of the rear end. The car derives its power from a 100kw (equates to 136ps) motor and can attain a top speed of 100mph. The two storage tanks, located amidships at the rear axle can be filled in minutes and hold enough fuel to allow the car to be 369 miles away before they run out.

With the present shortcomings of electric cars still to be overcome, hydrogen fuel looks like a very viable alternative. No range issue or lengthy refills to worry about and so on. The downside is of course that there are virtually no filling stations as yet. Electric cars have been with us for some considerable time now and yet, in the UK at least, a viable network of charging points seems a long way off. Coverage is patchy to say the least.

Clearly, it is early days yet for hydrogen but the lesson has to be learned. Motorists will not buy into anything that is going to inconvenience them, running costs aside. Car makers are building some extremely frugal petrol and diesel engines these days and we like what we know. To get us, in the long term, to switch to alternative fuels there has first got to be a useable infrastructure.

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- who has written 474 posts on Motor Blogger.

Geoff is a freelance writer and photographer.

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bG9nZ2VyX0xvZ28uanBnIjtpOjI7czo3MzoiaHR0cDovL21vdG9yYmxvZ2dlci5jby51ay93cC1jb250ZW50L3dvb191cGxvYWRzLzMtTW90b3JfQmxvZ2dlcl9Mb2dvLnBuZyI7fTwvbGk+PGxpPjxzdHJvbmc+d29vX3ZpZGVvX2NhdGVnb3J5PC9zdHJvbmc+IC0gQXV0byBOZXdzPC9saT48L3VsPg==