Hyundai begins assembly-line production of zero-emission green cars

Hyundai has officially become the first automobile manufacturer in the world to begin assembly-line production of zero-emission green cars.

The first ix35 Fuel Cell vehicle rolled off the production line at the company's Ulsan manufacturing complex on February 26, marking an important milestone for both Hyundai and fuel efficient vehicles in general.

Based on Hyundai's commercially available ix35 SUV, the ix35 Fuel Cell vehicle is powered purely by hydrogen, which it converts into electricity in order to power the vehicle's motor whilst emitting a clean, water vapour exhaust gas.

Each ix35 Fuel Cell is capable of travelling upwards of 594km on a single fill-up of hydrogen, and can reach a top speed of 160 km/hour according to Hyundai.

Hyundai vice chairman Eok Jo Kim says that the ix35 Fuel Cell vehicle proves that the Hyundai Motor Company is making significant strides towards achieving a zero-emissions future.

"The ix35 Fuel Cell is the most eco-friendly vehicle in the auto industry and proves that hydrogen fuel cell technology in daily driving is no longer a dream," said Mr Jo Kim at a ceremony on February 26.

"Assembly-line production of fuel cell vehicles marks a crucial milestone in the history of the automobile industry not just in Korea, but throughout the world," added Ulsan city mayor Mang Woo Park, whilst congratulating Hyundai on its achievement.

Hyundai is aiming to lease upwards of 1,000 ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles to vehicle fleets by 2015, at which point it hopes to begin manufacturing hydrogen fuel cell vehicles for consumer purchase.

Fleet managers in Australia are out of luck for now, as the first batch of ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles will be delivered primarily to private and public organisations in Europe, where the European Union has already initiated the construction of hydrogen fuelling stations.

Nonetheless, there's no doubt that this news offers an exciting glimpse into what the future may hold for motorists and fleet managers the world over.