Hyundai's fuel cell system to be used for Ineos rugged off-road utility vehicle

By Lim Chang-won Posted : November 23, 2020, 10:38 Updated : November 23, 2020, 10:38

[Courtesy of Hyundai Motor]

SEOUL -- Grenadier, a rugged off-road utility vehicle designed by the automotive section of Ineos, a chemicals company headquartered in London, will be installed with a fuel cell system developed by South Korea's Hyundai auto group as part of their cooperation to develop a hydrogen value chain in Europe.

The auto group said it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Ineos to jointly investigate opportunities for the production and supply of hydrogen as well as the worldwide deployment of hydrogen applications and technologies. Initially, they would seek to facilitate public and private sector projects focused on the development of a hydrogen value chain in Europe.

Ineos, which produces 300,000 tons of hydrogen a year mainly as a by-product from its chemical manufacturing operations, has launched a new business to develop and build clean hydrogen capacity across Europe. Through its subsidiary, Ineos is Europe's largest operator of electrolysis that uses renewable energy to produce hydrogen for power generation, transportation and industrial use.

"Ineos' move into the development of a fuel cell electric vehicle and hydrogen ecosystem marks yet another milestone towards sustainable and clean transportation," Kim Sae-hoon, who heads the auto group's fuel cell center, said in a statement on November 23. "We also hope our decades-long expertise in hydrogen fuel cell work in synergy with Ineos' expertise in the field of chemistry to realize the mass production of green hydrogen and fuel cells for the Grenadier."

The Grenadier, which is reminiscent of the old Land Rover Defender, has boxy bodywork, a steel ladder chassis, beam axles with long-travel progressive-rate coil spring suspension, and is to be powered by BMW six-cylinder engines. Ineos technology director Peter Williams said the agreement presents both companies with "new opportunities to extend a leading role in the clean hydrogen economy."

Hyundai leads a government campaign to replace combustion engines gradually with hydrogen fuel cells and electric batteries. By 2030, Hyundai aims to sell 25,000 fuel cell trucks in Europe, 12,000 in the United States and 27,000 in China. In September, Hyundai partnered with Cummins Inc., an American engine maker, to develop electric and fuel cell powertrains initially for the North American commercial vehicle market and explore ways to develop next-generation fuel cell systems.

Hyundai has modified its Xcient truck to produce a fuel cell model capable of delivering a travel range of about 400 kilometers (248 miles) on a single charge. The group started shipping the first batch of hydrogen-powered heavy-duty trucks to a client in Switzerland in July.

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