Photo: BMW

Photo: BMW

BMW will unveil its first-ever electric hydrogen fuel cell drive system at the 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the automaker announced.

The drive module prototype for the hydrogen fuel cell drive system will reveal a structure for the drive and energy storage components, as well as their possible integration into a future fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV).

In order to take into account the particular requirements of this technology in cars and to utilize its potential as fully as possible, BMW is replicating its approach with its series-produced BMW i3 and BMW i8 models by focusing on a specific vehicle architecture for a future fuel cell electric vehicle.

BMW previously produced the Hydrogen 7, a limited-production hydrogen vehicle that burned the hydrogen fuel in a modified internal combustion engine.

The fuel cell unit of the drive module includes the first fruits of the company’s collaboration with Toyota, the industry’s leading manufacturer of fuel cell technology. According to a report from Autocar, the collaboration between BMW and Toyota could lead to the German automaker's next hydrogen fuel cell vehicle that may be called the i5.

Currently, BMW has the i3 battery-electric hatchback and i8 hybrid sports car in its “I” brand of alternative-fuel vehicles.

Originally posted on Automotive Fleet