Hyundai Unveils First Hydrogen-Powered Tucson SUV at Greater Los Angeles Auto Show

Tucson Fuel Cell Vehicle Will Initiate Fleet Testing Program

Jan 05, 2005, 00:00 ET from Hyundai Motor Co.

    LOS ANGELES, Jan. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Hyundai Motor Co.'s fuel cell electric
 vehicle (FCEV) program today unveiled its second-generation fuel cell vehicle,
 the Tucson FCEV, at the Greater Los Angeles Auto Show.  The Tucson FCEV is
 Hyundai's first hydrogen-powered vehicle taking part in fleet operations to
 begin in the first quarter of 2005.
     Hyundai's second-generation fuel cell vehicle is dramatically improved in
 almost every way.  The Tucson FCEV has a driving range double that of
 Hyundai's first-generation vehicle, the Santa Fe FCEV.  Maximum speed and
 power have both increased to improve the overall performance.   In a major
 technology breakthrough, the Tucson FCEV is one of the first fuel cell
 vehicles capable of starting in freezing temperatures.  Testing has proven
 that the vehicle is capable of starting after being subjected to -20 degrees
 Celsius temperatures for five days.  Other technical advancements include a
 higher output fuel cell and a new lithium ion polymer battery.
     "These advances in our fuel cell electric vehicles are exciting steps
 forward for our program," said Kim Sang-Kwon, president of research and
 development for Hyundai-Kia Motors.  "The Tucson FCEV is proof that Hyundai
 has significantly improved efficiency and quality control in the manufacturing
     With this working model, Hyundai will be taking its fuel cell technology
 "to the fleets" and will begin fleet testing in just three months.  Fleets
 will eventually operate out of AC Transit of Oakland, Calif., Hyundai America
 Technical Center and Southern California Edison.
     The fleet testing phase of Hyundai's fuel cell research and development
 program is supported by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).  A
 team consisting of ChevronTexaco Corp., Hyundai Motor Co. and UTC Fuel Cells
 was awarded federal funds to lead a five-year demonstration and validation
 project designed to showcase practical applications of hydrogen energy
 technology.  The primary goal of this multi-year project is to develop and
 demonstrate safe, convenient and reliable hydrogen-based distributed power
 generation, fuel cell vehicles and vehicle fueling infrastructure, and to
 educate key audiences about the use of hydrogen as a potential fuel for
 transportation and power generation.
     "Entering this new phase of our program will allow us to build fuel cell
 electric vehicles at higher volumes for fleet testing applications," said
 President Kim.  "It also brings us one step closer to the commercialization of
 fuel cell vehicles."
     About the Tucson FCEV
     Built with lightweight, performance-boosting aluminum body components, the
 Tucson FCEV has a power-to-weight ratio similar to that of a conventional SUV.
 It also features low noise levels plus a roomy cabin that offers the same
 level of comfort and convenience as its gasoline-powered sibling.
     Unlike the Santa Fe FCEV, the Tucson Fuel Cell program has been running on
 a parallel path with the conventional Tucson providing fully digitized
 engineering data from the earliest stages.
     The Tucson FCEV's power plant has been relocated under the front hood,
 unlike its predecessor, which featured an under-floor installation.  In
 addition, the Tucson FCEV is capable of starting and operating in sub-zero
     Tucson FCEV's driving range has also been extended to 300 km (186 miles)
 thanks to its 152-liter (40-gallon) hydrogen storage tanks developed by
 Dynetek Industries Ltd. of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.  By contrast, the Santa
 Fe FCEV lacks cold weather start capability and is equipped with a 72-liter
 fuel tank.
     Marginally lighter than its predecessor, the Tucson FCEV also gets five
 more kW of power for a peak output of 80kW.  Its maximum speed is rated at
 150km/h (93 mph) compared to the Santa Fe's 124km/h (77 mph).
     As in the Santa Fe FCEV, Hyundai has once again partnered with UTC Fuel
 Cells of South Windsor, Connecticut, which will supply the hydrogen-powered
 fuel cell.  Enova Systems, of Torrance, Calif., has been tapped to provide the
 next generation hybrid-electric drive train, motor and control unit.  The
 Hyundai Tucson FCEV 152-V high voltage battery was co-developed by Hyundai
 Motor Co. and LG Chem in Seoul, Korea.
     Hyundai formed its first fuel cell task force team in 2000 and by October
 of the same year, it unveiled the Santa Fe FCEV, its first prototype fuel cell
 vehicle.  Hyundai has been an active member in the California Fuel Cell
 Partnership (CaFCP) in Sacramento, Calif. for five years.  Past-generation
 Hyundai fuel cell vehicles have participated in numerous CaFCP Road Rallies
 and Michelin Challenge Bibendums where Hyundai has won gold and silver awards
 in a variety of categories.
     About Hyundai Motor Co.
     Established in 1967, Hyundai Motor Co. has grown into the Hyundai-Kia
 Automotive Group, which includes over two dozen auto-related subsidiaries and
 affiliates.  Employing over 50,000 people worldwide, Hyundai Motor posted
 US$20.8 billion in sales in 2003 (on a non-consolidated basis).  Hyundai motor
 vehicles are sold in 193 countries through some 5000 dealerships and
 showrooms.  Further information about Hyundai Motor Co. and its products is
 available on the Internet at

SOURCE Hyundai Motor Co.