Hyundai Motor Group (HMG), which includes automotive brands Hyundai Motor Company and Kia Motors Corporation, announced its long-term roadmap FCEV Vision 2030 plan.

HMG says it will drastically boost the annual production capacity of its fuel-cell systems to 700,000 units by 2030 and explore new business opportunities to supply its fuel-cell systems to other transportation manufacturers of automobiles, drones, vessels, rolling stocks, and forklifts.  

Euisun Chung, Executive Vice Chairman of Hyundai Motor Group, said, “We will expand our role beyond the automotive transportation sector and play a pivotal role in global society’s transition to clean energy by helping make hydrogen an economically viable energy source. We are confident that hydrogen power will transcend the transportation sector and become a leading global economic success.”

The group plans to secure a 500,000-units-a-year fuel-cell electric vehicle (FCEV) production capacity by 2030, including passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles, in anticipation of high demand for global FCEVs expanding to around 2 million units a year within that timeframe.

HMG’s fuel-cell system manufacturing affiliate Hyundai Mobis Co. held a groundbreaking ceremony for its second fuel-cell system plant in Chungju, South Korea. The second factory will help Mobis increase annual fuel-cell system output to 40,000 units by 2022, up from the current 3,000 units.

Hyundai Motor earlier this year launched NEXO, its second-generation commercialized FCEV. NEXO was built on Hyundai’s first dedicated fuel-cell vehicle architecture, which is designed to provide such structural benefits as lighter weight, increased cabin space, and improved fuel-cell system layout.

HMG plans to further advance the fuel-cell system used in NEXO models to upgrade and diversify its fuel-cell system lineup, so it can respond to demands from various industry sectors.

The group’s proprietary fuel-cell system combines hydrogen fuel with oxygen taken from the air to produce electricity. Without combustion, the system only emits water as a by-product while also purifying polluted air, making it the ultimate source of clean energy.  

With high energy density and ease of stack refueling, hydrogen would help reduce the comprehensive ownership costs by about 10% for all possible transportation means including rolling stocks, vessels, and forklifts, according to a study by McKinsey & Company. The study also estimates that approximately 5.5 million to 6.5 million fuel-cell system units will be required by 2030 globally.

The Hydrogen Council, a global initiative of energy, transport, and industry companies including Hyundai Motor, predicts the annual demand for hydrogen would increase tenfold by 2050, which would create diverse opportunities for sustainable economic growth.