The BMW i Hydrogen Next – BMW’s hydrogen fuel cell X5 – will come with 369bhp when it goes in to small series production in 2022.
Back in the days when we had motor shows, BMW took the i Hydrogen NEXT to the Frankfurt Motor Show which, although with the world in turmoil it seems forever ago, was only a bit over six months past.
It sat on the side of BMW’s stand without any big fanfare, but it was there to let us know that BMW is tapping in to Toyota’s Hydrogen Fuel Cell experience, and are planning a hydrogen vehicle.
That hydrogen fuel cell car will be a hydrogen fuel cell-powered take on the current X5, and although it’s not going to turn in to a high volume mainstream model, it will become a small series product in 2022.
It will come with similar underpinnings to the upcoming BMW iX3 – namely a pair of electric motors, one for each axle – good for a combined 368bhp.
But instead of using energy stored in a battery per se, the hydrogen X5 will make its own, churning out electricity using hydrogen stored in a couple of 700 bar storage tanks where the gearbox and driveshaft usually live in an X5, promising good range whatever the ambient temperature, and no loss of room compared to an ICE X5.
BMW reckons this will set the stage for a proper production model before the end of the decade, although much will depend on the appetite for creating a refuelling infrastructure.