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Hyundai pioneers fuel-cell car-sharing scheme

Sharing is caring: Hyundai is providing 50 ix35 Fuel Cell models as part of a green car-sharing initiative in Munich, Germany.

Zero-emissions hydrogen-powered small SUV will be made available in Munich, Germany

8 Apr 2016

HYUNDAI will provided 50 examples of its ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles to short-term renting company BeeZero in Munich, Germany, beginning from the middle of this year, in a world-first zero-emissions car-sharing scheme.

A co-operation between The Linde Group and the South Korean vehicle giant, the move is to gain real-world customer experience using the hydrogen-powered SUV, as Hyundai embarks on a plan to be the global leader in mass-produced and commercially available FCEVs.

“The new BeeZero car-sharing offer is pioneering sustainable mobility,” according to Hyundai Motor Europe’s chief operating officer Thomas A. Schmid.

“Featuring the ix35 Fuel Cell, BeeZero will not only be the first car sharing service using hydrogen-powered zero-emission cars, but will also offer comfortable and reliable transportation for the public’s everyday needs.”

The member of the Executive Board at Munich-based industrial gas and associated engineering specialists Linde AG Christian Bruch added that combining car-sharing with FCEVs is an efficient and realistic way of obtaining a greater insight in to the mind and behaviour of consumers who may not be experts in either field.

“We expect to gain valuable information from day-to-day fleet operations which we will use to further develop our hydrogen technologies and to help expand the hydrogen infrastructure,” he said.

“BeeZero synergises two mobility trends that are gaining a lot of ground at the moment – car sharing and zero emissions – and will bring the benefits of fuel-cell technology to a wider group of potential users.”

Hyundai says the service will be rolled out in a zone-based model, where the 50 ix35 FCEVs will be available from key demographic areas located in and around Munich’s more centralised population hub. Access to them will be no different to the way most car-sharing companies operate, using on-line and/or smartphone apps to book the vehicles.

One of the biggest advantages of going hydrogen car-sharing is the sheer range on offer compared with many petrol or plug-in electric vehicles.

“The Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell can travel about 600 kilometres on a single tank, making it ideal for longer journeys too, to the Bavarian lakes or the mountains for example, and not just for short trips in the city,” Hyundai states.

“Hydrogen fuel for BeeZero is sourced from sustainable production processes, making it completely carbon neutral.”

According to Hyundai, about 250 ix35 FCEVs are plying European roads in 13 countries – more than any other car manufacturer combined – and this will be backed up with the launch of the Ioniq sub-brand of FCEV, plug-in hybrid, and hybrid models later this year in Europe.

“With our ix35 FCEV and several hybrid and plug-in hybrid models sold around the world, Hyundai Motor has already pioneered electric powertrains,” Mr Schmid said.

“Now, with the launch of the IONIQ, we take the lead as the only car brand with hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric as well as fuel cell vehicles in production, making low- to zero-emission cars accessible to everyone.”

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