Hyundai has revealed a new concept at this week’s
2014 Geneva Motor Show
, a stylish crossover powered by a fuel cell. Hyundai is investing heavily in fuel cell technology and will be leasing a version of its Tucson powered by a fuel cell
this spring at a cost of $499 per month over three years, with $3,000 down.
However, the new concept, called the Intrado, features Hyundai’s next-generation fuel cell system, which is said to be smaller and lighter than contemporary systems. It also features several other technologies that are a new to the Korean brand, and it’s also the first concept to utilize Hyundai’s Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language first shown on the 2015 Genesis.
Inspiration for the design came from the aviation industry. In particular, the underside of an aircraft’s wing, which produces lift and enables flight to take place. The advanced technical aspects of the Intrado also take inspiration from aviation, such as the use of advanced materials, removal of all unnecessary weight, and a highly-efficient powertrain.
The use of advanced materials in the construction of the Intrado, such as carbon fiber for the frame and a new type of lightweight steel for the body, has allowed engineers to keep weight down. Hyundai also claims that the materials are joined using a special technique that has the potential to change the way cars are constructed in the future.
The interior of the Intrado is defined by a focus on usability and adaptability, and is in keeping with the lightweight ethos of the concept’s construction. The seals of opening panels shut directly against the central carbon frame, showcasing the carbon fiber whenever the doors, hood or trunk are opened.
Hyundai hasn’t revealed detailed specs on the Intrado’s powertrain, but the company says the vehicle has a driving range of about 372 miles on a full tank of hydrogen. The fuel cell stack fitted to the Intrado doesn’t power the vehicle directly, but charges a 36-kWh lithium-ion battery that then powers an electric drive system.
The Intrado was penned by Hyundai’s design studio in Germany--as indicated by its codename, HED-9 (Hyundai Europe Design)--and is the first Hyundai to have been developed under the direction of Peter Schreyer, who was appointed head of design for both Hyundai and sister brand Kia in 2013. Though it doesn't preview any specific vehicle, elements from the Intrado are likely to appear on future Hyundai crossovers such as the next-generation Tucson and a possible new subcompact crossover to rival the likes of the Nissan Juke._______________________________________Follow Motor Authority on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.