Korea produces the most hydrogen electric vehicles in the world, but the charging infrastructure is inadequate.
According to the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA), Korea had the highest rate of hydrogen car distribution in the world as of last month, with 33% of the world’s hydrogen cars in use.
However, the charging infrastructure is insufficient, with 180 vehicles per charger, second only to 224 in the United States among five countries – Korea, the United States, China, Japan, and Germany. On the other hand, Germany has nine units per charger, Japan has 38, and China has 56, and the charging infrastructure is deemed adequate in comparison to the availability of hydrogen vehicles.
In Korea, where the number of hydrogen cars is rapidly growing compared to electric cars, the construction of charging stations is not keeping up with the rate of vehicle delivery, causing concern that the charging infrastructure will deteriorate. Between 2016 and 2020, Korea’s average annual growth rate for fuelled vehicles was 2% for internal combustion engines, 30% for hybrid cars, and 88 percent for electric cars, with hydrogen cars increasing at a rapid rate of 235 percent.
Over the same time span, the number of hydrogen charging stations increased by just 116%. As a result, the number of vehicles per hydrogen charger increased in Korea from 27 in 2017 to 169 in 2019 and 180 in March of this year. As a result, the charging situation is increasingly worsening. According to the association, charging an electric vehicle takes 16.2 hours, while charging a hydrogen vehicle takes 30 hours.
The disparity in charging infrastructure by area was also discovered to be a significant issue. The stronger the charging conditions, such as the number of hydrogen stations, accessibility, and operating hours, the higher the delivery rate of hydrogen vehicles, according to the group.
The distribution rate of hydrogen vehicles in the northern part of Gyeonggi Province, where there are no hydrogen charging stations, is only 12% (238 units) of the province’s total. 75 percent (798 units) of all hydrogen cars in Gyeongnam are distributed in Changwon City, where 75 percent (6 out of 8) of Gyeongnam hydrogen charging stations were built.