Hyundai to manufacture fuel cells in China


Hyundai plans to build a factory for fuel cell systems in Guangzhou. The plant in China’s Guangdong province will be Hyundai’s first fuel cell production base outside South Korea.

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An agreement to this effect has now been signed by representatives of Hyundai and the Guangdong provincial government. The company will manufacture fuel cell systems for the Hyundai Nexo and expects an initial capacity of 6,500 units per year. They will increase output depending on market demand and consider China’s hydrogen industry to develop “rapidly”.

Hyundai also intends to work with Chinese companies to participate in the Guangdong government’s hydrogen-related pilot project and initiatives. They also point to global companies from Japan, Germany, the UK and other countries, in a statement. These have also been working with China to foster fuel cell technologies. In a recent roadmap, the Chinese government aimed to have one million FCEVs on its roads by 2035 — the strategy centres on commercial vehicles.

For Hyundai, the strategy is well in line with their own. The Nexo FCEV has been around since 2018 in low numbers, apart from Korea. They also ran the ix35 as early as 2013. While these are passenger cars, Hyundai targets to sell 110,000 fuel cell vehicles by 2025. Many of these may be commercial vehicles such as the XCIENT truck. Hyundai signed two letters of intent with Chinese companies in November to supply 4,000 fuel cell trucks by 2025. The deal considers the Shanghai region as reported.

The company also just installed the stand-alone brand HTWO. The focus is to develop next-generation fuel cell system that can also power aircraft, forklifts, ships and trains. When launching HTWO, Hyundai already mentioned: “strategic partnerships with hydrogen, energy and logistics companies around the world” and a focus on “major hub regions” for Hyundai, namely Korea, the United States, Europe and China.

While the above is part of the Strategy 2025, Hyundai thinks longer-term hydrogen. The ‘Fuel Cell Vision 2030’ reaffirmed the commitment to fuel cell technology, they said in a recent statement. As part of this plan, the Group aims to produce 700,000 fuel cells annually to meet demand from various industry sectors.

In Guangzhou, construction will start next month. Hyundai expects completion of the fuel cell factory around autumn 2022.

Update 02 March 2021: Hyundai Motor Group is now starting the construction of its fuel cell system production plant in Guangzhou, China. Construction of the plant is scheduled to be completed in the second half of 2022, the carmaker confirms. The company also confirms the above information on initial capacity. The plant will be named HTWO Guangzhou. “The groundbreaking marks an important starting point for Hyundai Motor Group’s dedicated fuel cell system brand HTWO,” expressed Euisun Chung, chairman of Hyundai Motor Group.

HTWO stands for “hydrogen” and “humanity” at the same time, according to the company. Hyundai had introduced the independent brand in December. Under it, Hyundai says it will intensify its efforts to develop a next-generation fuel cell system that can be used not only in cars but also in aircraft, forklifts, ships and trains., (Update)


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