Hyundai’s XCIENT fuel cell trucks to hit German roads

Hyundai Motor Company has announced that its XCIENT Fuel Cell heavy-duty trucks would be exported to Germany, the largest commercial vehicle market in Europe.

Seven German logistics, manufacturing, and retail organizations will bring 27 XCIENT Fuel Cell trucks into fleet operation with support from Germany’s Federal Ministry of Digital and Transport (BMDV) for eco-friendly commercial vehicles.

“We are glad to now also officially enter the German commercial vehicle market with our heavy-duty fuel cell electric truck, the XCIENT Fuel Cell. Hyundai Motor, which is recognized as the leader in hydrogen fuel cell technology, will leverage this opportunity to expand our business into the wider European market by successfully supporting Germany’s efforts to achieve its carbon neutral goals,” said Mark Freymueller, Senior Vice President and Head of Commercial Vehicle Business Innovation of Hyundai Motor Company. 

Upon European Commission clearance, the BMDV rolled out its funding rules for commercial cars with alternative drive systems in August 2021. Funding is provided for battery, fuel cell, and (overhead line) hybrid electric cars, matching to infrastructure for refueling/charging and feasibility studies. Until 2024, the BMDV will have a budget of 1,6 billion euros to purchase environmentally friendly commercial cars.

The aforementioned seven German enterprises initially applied for funding with Hyundai’s XCIENT Fuel Cells and got permission from BMDV, once again demonstrating the competitiveness of XCIENT Fuel Cells.

Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility, a joint venture between Hyundai Motor Company and H2 Energy, has also launched Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility Germany GmbH (HHMG) to rapidly expand its entry into the German hydrogen-powered commercial vehicle market. To develop a hydrogen ecosystem in the country, HHMG will manage local market sales and customer support, in addition to upfitter management. Additionally, HHMG intends to participate actively in the second funding opportunity.

XCIENT Fuel Cell Specifications

The to-be-delivered XCIENT Fuel Cell is outfitted with a 180-kW hydrogen fuel cell system and two 90-kW fuel cell stacks. Durability of the system and overall fuel efficiency of the vehicle are matched to the needs of commercial fleet customers. The 350-kilowatt electric motor with maximum torque of 2,237 Newton-meters permits dynamic driving performance.

The seven enormous hydrogen tanks of the XCIENT Fuel Cell have a total storage capacity of around 31 kg of fuel, while a set of three batteries with a power output of 72 kWh provides an additional source of energy. The maximum range per charge is 400 kilometers. Depending on the ambient temperature, refueling a full hydrogen tank takes between 8 and 20 minutes.

Hyundai Motor’s XCIENT Fuel Cell is the world’s first mass-produced hydrogen electric heavy-duty truck, debuting in 2020. As of July 2022, the company has already deployed 47 units in Switzerland, where they have driven more than four million kilometers. In Switzerland, the trucks service 23 distinct consumers.