[Video] 2022 BMW X5 Hydrogen Prototype On-road Action

BMW is still in pursuit of hydrogen fuel cell technology, among few automakers in the world. While many automakers are going all-in on electric vehicles (EVs), BMW chooses to develop the fuel cell program. The Bavarians feel like hydrogen technology is the solution for long-distance vehicles in the future. And with the BMW X5 Hydrogen Prototype, BMW again proves its advancement, showing off its latest hydrogen fuel cell tech.

The BMW i Hydrogen NEXT comes based on the BMW X5. It’s basically a testing ground for the brand’s latest technology. In this testing, BMW aims to verify if the hydrogen fuel cell-powered vehicles can support the brand’s lineup where traditional EVs have difficulties. For example, hydrogen can be a helpful alternative for areas with no access to high-speed charging. Furthermore, long-distance vehicles could also benefit from hydrogen power, including long-haul semi-trailer trucks.

Similar to the average electric car, hydrogen fuel cell cars use electric motors for propulsion. Their only difference is in the process. While the battery pack supplies electricity, hydrogen fuel cells convert compressed hydrogen into electricity. As a result, energy comes through a chemical reaction caused by hydrogen.

Housing the hydrogen is two 700-bar tanks made from CFRP (Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic). This tank holds a combined six kilograms of compressed hydrogen. Once electricity generates through the chemical reaction, the only by-product is water vapour. Additionally, the hydrogen tanks can be refuelled in only three to four minutes, similar to a gasoline-powered car. A converter adjusts the voltage of that energy to the electric motor when hydrogen in the fuel cell tank mix with oxygen in the air.

Stay tuned for the latest updates about this upcoming BMW technology.

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