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BMW offers virtual insight into its powertrain system for the BMW i Hydrogen NEXT and reaffirms its commitment to emission-free mobility.

01 Apr 2020 | International News : Germany

The BMW Group has offered the first virtual insights into the powertrain system for the BMW i Hydrogen NEXT.

The concept car reaffirms its commitment to following a carefully considered and systematic route to emission-free mobility, which also includes the careful consideration of differing market and customer requirements as part of the company's Power of Choice strategy.

BMW unveils the first virtual insights into the powertrain of the BMW iHydrogen NEXT 
Developing alternative powertrain technologies is a top priority for the BMW Group, which believes facilitating the breakthrough for sustainable mobility on the global stage requires customer centricity and flexibility.

Although the BMW Group has no doubt as to the long-term potential of fuel cell powertrain systems, the requisite infrastructure, such as an extensive, Europe-wide network of hydrogen filling stations, is lacking at present.

The company is using the time until the infrastructure and sustainably produced hydrogen supply are in place to substantially reduce the cost of manufacturing the powertrain system. A total of 25 models are slated for launch by 2023, including at least 12 with an all-electric powertrain.

The fuel cell system for the powertrain for the BMW i Hydrogen NEXT generates up to 168bhp of electric energy from the chemical reaction between hydrogen and ambient oxygen, and emits nothing but water vapour. The vehicle also stores a pair of 700 bar tanks that can hold 6kg of hydrogen together, and refuelling only takes three to four minutes. This fifth generation eDrive unit is set to make its debut in the BMW iX3 and is also fully integrated into the BMW i Hydrogen NEXT. The total system output of 369bhp fuels the typical driving dynamics for which BMW is renowned for.

The pair of 700 bar tanks guarantees a long range regardless of the weather conditions
To ensure it is ideally prepared to meet the technological demands of a hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicle by the second half of this decade, the BMW Group is teaming up with the Toyota Motor Corporation as part of a successful partnership since 2013.

Fuel cells from the cooperation with Toyota will be deployed in the BMW i Hydrogen NEXT, alongside a fuel cell stack and overall system developed by the BMW Group. The two companies are also founding members of the Hydrogen Council.

The BMW Group's participation in the research project BRYSON, a German acronym for 'space-efficient hydrogen storage tanks with optimised usability', underlines its faith in the future viability and potential of hydrogen fuel cell technology.

An alliance between BMW AG and a variety of German engineering universities, the project seeks to develop pioneering high-pressure hydrogen storage tanks designed to allow easy integration into future universal vehicle architectures. Set to run for a period of three-and-a-half years and with funding from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, this project will also help to lower the cost of manufacturing hydrogen tanks for fuel cell vehicles, enabling them to compete effectively with battery electric vehicles.

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