BMW has been making waves in the automotive industry with their latest announcement of the iX5 Hydrogen pilot fleet, which will begin operations this year. After four years of development, BMW is now allowing international media representatives to test drive this new vehicle, which is set to revolutionize how we view zero-emission mobility.
Hydrogen fuel cell technology is an efficient way to store and transport renewable energy, making it a key component in the energy transition and climate protection. Oliver Zipse, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, stated, "Hydrogen is the missing piece of the puzzle for zero-emission mobility because a single technology will not be enough to enable climate-neutral mobility worldwide."
The iX5 Hydrogen, based on the current BMW X5, was first presented as a concept idea at the IAA 2019. The vehicle has been developed at BMW's competence center for hydrogen in Munich, where the "highly efficient" fuel cell systems of the pilot fleet are being produced. The fuel cell has an output of 125 kW/170 hp and is one of the core components in the iX5 Hydrogen.
The gaseous hydrogen required to supply the fuel cell is stored in two 700 bar tanks made of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP). The BMW iX5 Hydrogen achieves a range of 504 kilometers in the WLTP cycle and takes only three to four minutes to fill up the hydrogen tanks. The chemical reaction between the gaseous hydrogen and the oxygen from the ambient air takes place in the fuel cell, which then powers the vehicle.