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Hyundai's fuel cell concept car

Hyundai gets serious about fuel cells at Frankfurt

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Taking centre stage on Hyundai's Frankfurt show stand will be the i-Blue, an MPV crossover concept housing the latest fuel cell technology from the Koreans.

Hyundai has long proclaimed its plans to be taken seriously as a global car manufacturer and its display in Frankfurt next week will help with that no end thanks to the debut of a concept featuring hydrogen-powered fuel cell technology Hyundai reckons will be in the showroom in less than ten years.

Despite having the profile of a people carrier, the i-Blue is termed a 2+2 crossover, which is about the size of a Ford Mondeo. Presumably the limitation in seating is due to space needed for the fuel cell powertrain and associated gubbins. The shape of the i-Blue is interesting enough, with a large panoramic windscreen cutting deep into the roof and a sharply sculpted side glass shape disguising the more conventional upright rear end.

Few details are yet know about the fuel cell, but Hyundai describes it as third-generation and states that it intends to mass produce a fuel cell propelled car within the decade, according to Dr Hyun-Soon Lee (President of Research and Development), "still realising the safety, comfort, convenience and driving range of a traditional internal combustion engine vehicle."