While electric cars have been booming for the past couple of years, some automakers are still keen on developing hydrogen power (fuel-cell) for vehicles. Hyundai has made some headway in fuel-cell vehicles with the all-new Nexo, while Audi has been working on hydrogen power for about two decades. Now, the two automakers have teamed up to further develop the alternative power source.
Now, this doesn't mean we'll be seeing Hyundai-badged Audis and vice versa in the future. Instead, the collaboration will focus more on powertrain development, cross-licensing patents and granting access to non-competitive components. It essentially means that the two automakers will share some parts and tech in their future hydrogen vehicles. The agreement is currently subject to approval from the applicable regulatory authorities.
“The fuel cell is the most systematic form of electric driving and thus a potent asset in our technology portfolio for the emission-free premium mobility of the future. On our FCEV roadmap, we are joining forces with strong partners such as Hyundai. For the breakthrough of this sustainable technology, cooperation is the smart way to leading innovations with attractive cost structures,” said Peter Mertens, Board Member for Technical Development at Audi.
So why hydrogen? Audi stated that fuel-cell electric vehicles feature long ranges and short refueling times, making it an attractive future source of energy for electric mobility. With the collaboration being official, Audi also took the opportunity to announce their plans to introduce their first series production fuel-cell vehicle, which will be a crossover. Given the timing of the partnership, it is possible that the vehicle Audi mentioned will have shared parts with other Hyundai fuel-cell vehicles.