Hydrogen-powered BMW on display
Luxury car maker BMW has recently displayed a hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric car (FCEV). The vehicle, which has been designed in a joint project with Japanese giant Toyota, will be built using the body of a 5-Series Gran Tourismo. BMW claims that the car can travel in excess of 300 miles using a single tank of compressed hydrogen fuel. The engine has a power capacity of 245hp, which is almost the same as BMW's new turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engines. The difference between an FCEV and a conventional car is the combustion of oxygen and hydrogen inside a fuel cell, which generates the electrical energy used to power the motor of the car.
The advantage of this vehicle is that it has a higher maximum range and can be refuelled at a similar rate to a traditional petrol engine. Toyota is considered a market leader in this technology and BMW has been in partnership with the Japanese company since 2013. A statement released by BMW explains: "The strategic collaboration between the BMW Group and the Toyota Motor Company agreed at the beginning of 2013 has provided fresh momentum for the development of FCEV drive technology." Both companies want to continue their relationship in the development of hydrogen technology.
The vehicle BMW has on display is 100% a demonstration model; however, Toyota is already planning the world's inaugural FCEV. The fact that BMW has got to this stage of development suggests that we could be seeing a production vehicle in its showrooms at some stage in the future.