Two years after unveiling the BMW i Hydrogen NEXT concept car, BMW Group has presented the BMW iX5 Hydrogen at the IAA Mobility 2021 in Munich.
Currently still in series development, the Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) with hydrogen fuel cell drive train was one of several vehicles visitors could experience as they were driven along the Blue Lane connecting the main exhibition grounds with other exhibition venues in the city centre.
“With its high-performance fuel cell and optimised power battery, the BMW iX5 Hydrogen’s drive system is unique in the world,” said Juergen Guldner, head of BMW Group Hydrogen Fuel Cell Technology and Vehicle Projects. “With this, we are forging new paths for sustainable driving pleasure.”
The BMW iX5 Hydrogen is a modern luxury Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) that combines ground-breaking drive technology with the powerful proportions and versatility of a BMW X model.
Individual exterior and interior design elements highlight the car’s ties to the BMW i brand, as well as its specific drive technology. The inner edging of the BMW kidney grille, the inserts in the 22- inch aerodynamic wheels and the attachments in the outer portion of the rear apron are all in BMW i Blue. The entry sills and cover trim for the instrument panel also sport a ‘hydrogen fuel cell’ badge.
The mesh inserts covering the cooling air openings at the front of the BMW iX5 Hydrogen, as well as the rear apron and its diffuser element, also have their own unique design. The ornamental grilles covering the BMW kidney grille, the lower and two outer air inlets and the body elements for the lower rear end trim all use 3D printing to produce prototype and standard parts.
AERODYNAMIC AND SUSTAINABLE.
The BMW iX5 Hydrogen’s aerodynamic wheels come with sustainably produced tyres made of natural rubber and rayon. The raw materials for this are extracted in compliance with the standards of the independent Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) organisation.
The BMW Group is the first automotive manufacturer worldwide to use Pirelli tyres made exclusively from certified natural rubber and the wood-based material rayon in its production vehicles.
THE HYDROGEN POTENTIAL.
The BMW iX5 Hydrogen combines fuel cell technology with a fifth-generation BMW eDrive. By converting hydrogen into electricity – the drive system delivers an electrical output of up to 125 kW/170 hp, with water vapour as the only emission. This drive power also enables it to maintain consistently high speeds over longer distances.
In coasting overrun and braking phases, it serves as a generator, feeding energy into a power battery. The energy stored in this power battery is also utilised for particularly sporty driving manoeuvres – delivering a system output of 275 kW/374 hp and guaranteeing the brand's signature driving experience.
FILLING UP MADE FASTER.
The hydrogen needed to supply the fuel cell is stored in two 700-bar tanks made of carbon-fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP), which together hold almost six kilograms of hydrogen. “Filling up the hydrogen tanks only takes three to four minutes – so there are no limits on using the BMW iX5 Hydrogen for long distances, with just a few, short stops in-between,” explains Guldner.