Hyundai’s Xcient Fuel Cell heavy-duty trucks Are Heading To Europe For Commercial Use
Hyundai Motor Company shipped on July 6 the first 10 units of the Hyundai Xcient Fuel Cell, the world’s first mass-produced fuel cell heavy-duty trucks, to Switzerland.
The company plans to ship a total of 50 Xcient Fuel Cells to Switzerland this year, with the handover to commercial fleet customers starting in September.
Hyundai plans to roll out a total of 1,600 Xcient Fuel Cell trucks by 2025, reflecting the company’s environmental commitment and technological prowess as it works toward reducing carbon emissions through zero-emission solutions.
The Xcient Fuel Cell is powered by a 190 kW hydrogen fuel cell system with dual 95 kW fuel cell stacks. Seven large hydrogen tanks offer a combined storage capacity of around 32.09kg of hydrogen.
The driving range between refuelling for Xcient Fuel Cell is about 400 km, which was developed with an optimal balance between the specific requirements from the potential commercial fleet customers and the charging infrastructure in Switzerland. Refuelling time for each truck takes approximately 8-20 minutes.
Aside from this truck, Hyundai Motor is developing a long-distance tractor unit capable of travelling 1,000km on a single tank equipped with an enhanced fuel cell system with high durability and power, aimed at global markets including North America and Europe.
Green Hydrogen Ecosystem
In 2019, Hyundai Motor Company formed Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility (HHM), a joint venture with Swiss company H2 Energy, which will lease the trucks to commercial truck operators on a pay-per-use basis, meaning there is no initial investment for the commercial fleet customers.
Hyundai chose Switzerland as the starting point for its business venture for various reasons. One of the reasons is the Swiss LSVA road tax on commercial vehicles, which does not apply for zero-emission trucks. That nearly equalizes the hauling costs per kilometre of the fuel cell truck compared to a regular diesel truck.
Hyundai’s business case involves using purely clean hydrogen generated from hydropower. To truly reduce carbon emissions, all of the trucks need to run on only green hydrogen. Switzerland is the country with one of the highest shares of hydropower globally, and can therefore deliver sufficient green energy for the production of hydrogen. Once the project is underway in Switzerland, Hyundai plans to expand it to other European countries as well.
Hyundai Hydrogen Leadership
As Hyundai looks to the future, zero-emission mobility will play a significant role in the company’s strategy. In addition to the Xcient Fuel Cell trucks, Hyundai is also the manufacturer of Nexo, its second-generation hydrogen-powered SUV. By 2025, the company aims to sell 670,000 electric vehicles annually, including 110,000 FCEVs.