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17 May 2024

An SUV has been powered by Intelligent Energy’s 157kW fuel cell

Amy Power
An SUV has been powered by Intelligent Energy’s 157kW fuel cell

It was recently revealed that Intelligent Energy (IE), a UK-based company’s smaller and more powerful hydrogen fuel cell, is capable and suitable for powering passenger cars. This was made clear when the technology powered an SUV that was provided by Changan Automobile.

It was in September 2023 that the innovative system was first revealed and the company stated that the aim of this creation was to meet the performance and space constraints of a passenger vehicle. This manufacturing process was supported by the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC).

The 157kW fuel cell system has been named the IE-DRIVE™ and it has been stated that this system has more gross electrical power, in comparison to any other passenger car single stack application which is currently available. On top of this excellent ability, the DRIVE also includes a heat exchanger, which is an estimated 30% smaller in comparison to other similar models. Furthermore, the system also has a direct water injection system, which prevents the need for the system to have a humidifier and its final advantage is that it is purposefully designed to meet low bonnet requirements which often come with a passenger car.

When looking at its potential to be sold, IE has predicted if sold under full-scale, high-volume manufacturing conditions, the DRIVE should cost an estimated $125 per kW by the end of the decade. This is based off a report which stated that it was in 2023 that fuel cells were being sold at around $1,500 per kW.

IE’s Chief Executive, David Woolhouse, commented, “With 25% of passenger cars expected to have hydrogen fuel cell powertrains, this clean technology represents the future. As an independent and IATF-compliant tier 1 supplier business, I’m proud we have developed a breakthrough solution that can open up the market for passenger car manufacturers that need to package a more powerful system into their vehicles.”

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