Today marks a full year of consumer availability for the first mass-produced fuel cell vehicle, the Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell CUV. This innovative hydrogen-powered CUV has been delivered to 70 Southern California residents, who have since accumulated more than 475,000 miles on their local streets and freeways, all while emitting only environmentally-friendly clean water vapor. The Tucson Fuel Cell CUV offers high-versatility, refueling speed similar to gasoline, and an estimated 265 miles of driving range, comparing favorably with similar gasoline vehicles.
This increasing number of real-world fuel cell drivers and their cumulative impact on emissions reduction marks a major milestone in the continuing adoption of fuel cell technology. Recognizing the important role these consumers are taking in reducing our dependence on fossil fuels, Hyundai is helping to share their story in a variety of ways.
“Over the past year, Hyundai’s Tucson Fuel Cell owners are showing the world today that this technology represents the next generation of zero-emissions transportation,”
said Mike O’Brien, vice president, Corporate and Product Planning, Hyundai Motor America.
“Building momentum for fuel cell vehicles and their real-world applications, these customers are sharing their experiences of how the Tucson fits seamlessly into their daily lives.”
A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A FUEL CELL FAMILY: THE USELTONS
Dave Uselton, who has been driving the Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell in California since June of 2014, lives in Dana Point with his family. Dave is a global consultant who travels extensively and is exposed to various worldwide trends in his line of expertise. Back at home, Dave is very involved in music, both in his own band and supporting the music industry, and enjoys kayaking. His wife is very active with rescue dog efforts, regularly visiting local shelters and bringing abandoned animals to various public venues to help increase their exposure for adoption. The entire family has been quick to adopt the Tucson Fuel Cell in this variety of activities, all emissions-free.
THE LEAGUE OF TUCSON FUEL CELL DRIVERS
As the first automaker with a mass-produced fuel cell vehicle on the road today, Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell owners are helping to usher in the new era of sustainable, zero-emissions fuel. In a creative campaign hosted on the Tucson Fuel Cell website, Hyundai gives voice to these drivers as the everyday superheroes they represent. They are commuting to work, getting the girls to softball practice, hitting the drive-thru Starbucks on the way home, emissions-free. They’re keeping a low profile, going incognito behind the wheel of the Tucson Fuel Cell—the perfect vehicle for people quietly changing the world, one mile at a time, yet with an unbridled internal enthusiasm.
Eight of Hyundai’s fuel cell customers present their superhero personas with well-known artists creating comic-book-like illustrations of their powers. In addition, three of these superheroes are featured in their own videos:
• Carolyn Rowley (“Mother Nurture”): An eco-friendly mother who started her own orphanage in Kenya and was awarded California’s Best Sustainable Garden drives a Fuel Cell because it runs only on water and serves as direct extension of her lifestyle.
• Celso Pierre (“Blue Lightning”): When Celso isn’t daylighting as an engineer, he’s off helping green-field startups in Mexico and Brazil. This everyday superhero surfs, bikes, hikes and drives the Tucson Fuel Cell to help protect the environment he loves so dearly.
• Nancy Gillespie (“Eco-Master”): Along with her trusty sidekicks, this commander of all-things-eco uses her power only for good, including founding an eco-friendly company that distributes environmentally-friendly dog products.
INNOCEAN USA, Hyundai Motor America’s agency of record, created the campaign which is hosted on the Tucson Fuel Cell website.
TUCSON FUEL CELL ADVANTAGES
The Tucson Fuel Cell alleviates some of the range and utility limitations of traditional battery electric vehicles. The Tucson Fuel Cell maintains the day-to-day flexibility of the gasoline-powered Tucson, so that its driver is able to fulfill their transportation needs without range or recharging-time concerns to their lifestyle.
Hydrogen refueling stations are on the rise, making fueling even more convenient for fuel cell drivers. According to both government and industry experts, hydrogen stations are forecasted to reach around 20 stations by the end of 2015 and approximately 50 stations in 2017.
The Tucson Fuel Cell is an advanced electric vehicle – one that creates its own electricity, on-board, from hydrogen. According to the University of California, Irvine Advanced Power and Energy Program’s study, the hydrogen fuel cell provides comparable total well-to-wheel emissions to a battery electric vehicle. For the Tucson Fuel Cell driver, this social benefit is achieved with greater utility, versatility and without compromises. Consider:
• Driving range of 265 miles
• Refueling time similar to gasoline vehicle of same size
• Minimal reduction in daily utility compared with its gasoline counterpart
• Instantaneous electric motor torque
• Minimal cold-weather effects compared with battery-electric vehicles
• Superb daily reliability and long-term durability
◦ No moving parts within the power-generating fuel cell stack
◦ More than two million durability test miles on Hyundai’s fuel cell fleet since 2000
◦ Extensive crash, fire and leak testing successfully completed
• Quieter EV operation
• Zero greenhouse-gas emissions, emits only water vapor