BMW had good news to announce for all fans of hydrogen drives in recent days. The long-established Munich-based company plans to launch its first hydrogen vehicle for selected customers this year. Visually, however, the newcomer will look familiar to connoisseurs of the brand. After all, the BMW iX5 Hydrogen is to use the body of the current SUV.
BMW launches trial run with BMW iX5 Hydrogen
Hydrogen is on everyone’s lips. For example, a hydrogen-powered train fleet went into passenger service in Lower Saxony this May. BMW also appears to be interested in the technology. However, the automaker is not putting all its eggs in one basket with its upcoming hydrogen car. Instead, the Munich-based company wants to send its newcomer into the race as a kind of guinea pig. That’s why the BMW iX5 Hydrogen will not go on sale as a production vehicle, but will only be made available in limited editions for a specific group of customers.
BMW itself, however, does not justify its restrained production volume by any means with too little willingness to take risks. Instead, the carmaker points out that hydrogen filling stations are still scarce in Germany. But even if BMW does not want to mass produce its BMW iX5 Hydrogen (yet), this is a very clear sign of things to come. After all, the automaker hereby makes it clear that it does not only want to focus on the electric car, but also gives other drive forms a chance. This can also be seen in the BMW 7 Series, which is to be launched as both an e-car and a combustion engine in the same body.
There’s 374 horsepower under the hood
Since it’s a BMW, the automaker’s ranks naturally don’t let their hair down when it comes to power. The fuel cell merger is said to offer a maximum output of 125 kW. The hydrogen tank of the BMW iX5 Hydrogen is to hold a total of six kilograms of hydrogen. According to BMW, it will take just under four minutes to fill it completely. An ingenious storage system is to ensure that the SUV accumulates energy while driving, enabling a maximum output of 374 hp when needed.
Slight visual tweaks for BMW iX5 Hydrogen
Even though the body is taken from the current X5, the Munich-based automaker wants to use small but subtle details to indicate that this is the hydrogen version. Accordingly, iconic design elements such as the striking kidney at the front are given blue color accents. We will see whether the BMW iX5 Hydrogen is competitive in the hydrogen car segment from the end of 2022. That is when it is scheduled to go on sale.