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Volkswagen Passat HyMotion fuel cell-powered practicality (pictures)

The market isn't ready for fuel-cell cars, but Volkswagen is. This is the hydrogen-powered Passat HyMotion.

Tim_Stevens.jpg
Tim_Stevens.jpg

Tim Stevens

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1 of 14 Josh Miller/CNET

This is the Passat HyMotion, a hydrogen-powered fuel-cell car from Volkswagen.

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2 of 14 Josh Miller/CNET

It's basically an EV, but instead of taking its electricity from batteries, it comes from the fuel cell. This means it can be fully recharged in minutes.

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And, from the outside, you'd never know anything was different.

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4 of 14 Josh Miller/CNET

Though to be honest gray isn't the most exciting of colors.

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Under the hood things look fairly alien, though.

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Lots of high-voltage wiring, handling the current from the fuel cell.

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The HyMotion actually has a small battery pack, which is charged through regenerative braking.

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The powertrain is basically the same as the e-Golf.

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The interior is virtually indistinguishable from a standard car.

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Automatic transmission only -- sorry manual fans.

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The only change in the interior is the dash, with a power meter on the left rather than a standard tachometer.

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Just in case you weren't sure whether this was a standard Passat, the graphics will let you know.

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Perhaps the biggest compromise in the HyMotion: the trunk space is severely restricted.

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Volkswagen has no plans for production yet, but when the market is ready, so too will the car be!

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