Hyundai Next Generation FCEV crossover makes hydrogen hot

It's not just a rebadged Genesis GV80.

Hyundai

Hyundai was actually the first automaker to release a mass-produced hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the Tucson Fuel Cell. Its next creation builds upon that legacy, but it charts its own path at the same time.

Hyundai unveiled the Next Generation FCEV crossover at an event on Thursday. The unoriginally named concept features a hydrogen fuel cell powertrain with plenty of revisions over the Tucson's unit, as well as a new dose of design that gives it a premium feeling not found on the Tucson.

This car looks like if the Kona went off to college and came back with a full-time job and benefits.

Hyundai

The system in this concept is actually Hyundai's fourth-generation fuel cell. Its efficiency is up over the Tucson, which helps contribute to its estimated full-tank range of 500 miles. It's 20 percent more powerful, at about 160 horsepower. It can start in temperatures as low as negative 22 degrees Fahrenheit, too. The compressed hydrogen gas is stored in three equally sized tanks to help balance the vehicle.

In terms of style, the FCEV looks much closer to production than its forebear, the FE Concept, which debuted at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year. The exterior now has a more traditional grille, and the fact that it's a crossover should surprise precisely no one, given how much the market loves crossovers. It's also a far cry from the Genesis GV80 concept we saw at the New York Auto Show.

Inside, things are looking pretty premium, closer to a Genesis than a Hyundai. The interior is pretty spartan, focusing its switchgear on the center stack and leaving things pretty clean otherwise. The gauge cluster is a screen, and right next to it is an equally large infotainment screen. The center console rises up to meet the vents like in the Lexus RX. It's a good look.

If you want more details on the car, you're going to have to wait until January. Hyundai plans to discuss the car's advanced driver-assist systems, as well as its actual name, at CES 2018 in Las Vegas. You can bet your bottom dollar that we'll be there in person to bring you all the details.

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