December 2, 2021

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BMW tests hydrogen, electric X5

BMW has begun real-world tests of its i-Hydrogen Next, an X5 paired with EV and hydrogen tech.

The BMW i Hydrogen Next is an all-electric vehicle fuelled by the reaction of hydrogen and oxygen in a fuel cell.

The German automaker says it believes that hydrogen fuel cell technology can replace internal combustion engines, plug-in hybrids (PHEVs), and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) as the future of mobility.

Toyota and BMW are collaborating on hydrogen cars, with BMW planning to launch the i Hydrogen Next in 2022.

It will see limited production, as BMW plans to devote more energy to EVs in the coming years.

The testing that began this week will aim to tune the software controlling the car’s driving and operating functions, the automaker has said, following static tests of the fuel cell system and hydrogen tanks.

BMW has been experimenting with hydrogen fuel cell technology for decades.

“Hydrogen fuel cell technology can be an attractive option for sustainable drive trains – especially in larger vehicle classes,” said Frank Weber, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Development on the firm’s website.

BMW is also aiming to get practical experience using this drivetrain in real-world conditions.

The i Hydrogen Next will pair BMW’s eDrive technology already rolled out in vehicles like the iX3 with a hydrogen fuel cell technology developed along with Toyota-one of the other major players in the field.