Hyundai recently made news when it shut its R&D centre for combustion engines and now we are hearing similar things about its hydrogen-fuel division. According to news reports from South Korea, the company has halted plans to pursue a third-generation fuel cell technology. The move comes as a surprise as the company showcased its Hydrogen Vision 2040 concept just months ago. Going by the rumours, an internal audit revealed that the carmaker is unable to meet the original target in terms of production cost reductions.
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The Hyundai Vision FK was unveiled in November this year.
Now the development will likely concern other group brands like Genesis and Kia as well. The Genesis hydrogen car had been in development for over a year and was supposed to come to fruition in 2025, but we don’t have any reaffirmation from the brand yet. Reports also mention that Hyundai has not completely abandoned the project. Aside from running into technical issues, other roadblocks are represented by the lack of marketability and the underdeveloped charging infrastructure. Sources close to the matter cited by one Korean daily newspaper claim the decision was taken last month after an in-house revision of the project.
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The Hyundai Nexo was one of the first fuel cell vehicles to enter production.
The FK concept unveiled in September served as a window into the Hyundai Motor Group’s hydrogen future but further development on that project is still uncertain. The rear-wheel-drive FK had a mid-mounted hydrogen fuel cell giving enough juice for over 600 km. The FK was also said to be a plug-in hybrid equipped with a fuel cell energy converter and was believed to be a lot more advanced and interesting than the Nexo.
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