Hyundai Intrado Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Concept 2014
At the 2014 Geneva Motor Show Hyundai Motor has unveiled its new concept car, the Hyundai Intrado Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Concept 2014, to a global audience for the first time.
Hyundai Intrado signifies a new direction for Hyundai, and is a vision of how cars will meet future mobility needs. Far more than a styling exercise, Intrado demonstrates Hyundai’s belief that advanced vehicle technologies and intelligent design can combine to engage more effectively with driver and passengers.
Woong-chul Yang, Vice Chairman at Hyundai Motor Company (HMC) Namyang R&D Centre, commented: “As we develop lightweight technologies, the application of advanced materials such as carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) in structural members is of great interest to us. Intrado reflects our innovative efforts in this area, while demonstrating the close collaboration between designers at Hyundai Design Centre Europe and engineers at HMC Namyang R&D Centre. The result is Intrado – a vision of how eco-friendly cars will deliver delight to our customers.”
Allan Rushforth, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Hyundai Motor Europe, added: “Hyundai Motor’s vision is ‘lifetime partner in automobiles’, and Intrado truly embodies this thinking. We have looked to the future and the roles cars will play in our daily lives. Intrado is also a true demonstration of our technological and design abilities, and shows our outlook for mobility in the region. Hyundai has a great SUV heritage in Europe with the hugely-popular ix35 and Santa Fe models; Intrado both draws on this heritage and envisages the compact car requirements of the millennial generation.”
Hyundai Intrado results from a fresh consideration of passenger vehicles, and has therefore been designed and developed from the inside out. The interior is defined by a focus on usability and adaptability, with innovative materials and contrasting colours utilised to appeal to buyers with an active lifestyle. At the same time, by including only what is relevant to buyers, the exterior of Intrado presents a progressive interpretation of Hyundai Motor’s established form language, fluidic sculpture.
Hyundai Intrado is the first concept designed under the direction of Peter Schreyer, President and Chief Design Officer of Hyundai Motor Group, since he was appointed in January 2013. The vehicle reflects his brief to explore daring new design possibilities for the Hyundai brand.
Hyundai Intrado shows the company’s desire to produce lighter, stronger cars that are even better to drive and simpler to repair, influenced by insights into how consumers are likely to interact with their cars in the future. At the heart of the car is a super-lightweight frame formed from a mixture of advanced materials and constructed by new manufacturing and joining techniques.
The concept car is powered by a next-generation hydrogen fuel cell powertrain that utilises a 36 kW lithium-ion battery. Intrado promises more responsive and agile driving dynamics, thanks to the lower weight and greater efficiency of its powertrain, which also reinforces the company’s commitment to this potential-rich and emissions-free technology that began in 1998.
The result of close collaboration between Hyundai Motor’s design and engineering teams in Europe and Namyang, Korea, Intrado was styled at the Hyundai Design Centre Europe in Rüsselsheim, Germany – as indicated by its codename, ‘HED-9’ (Hyundai European Design-9).
The key inspiration behind Hyundai Intrado comes from aeronautics, and harnessing the power of air flow to create a more efficient form. This inspired the name ‘Intrado’, which is the underside area of an aircraft’s wing that creates lift.
Raphael Bretecher, General Manager, Design Department at Hyundai Design Centre Europe, and Intrado project leader, commented: “Intrado aims to encapsulate the efficiency and freedom associated with flying, while paving the way for future Hyundai models. The parallels with aircraft go far beyond the name. Nothing is present solely for decoration. Everything serves a purpose. Like an aircraft, Intrado has a purity of design that is beautiful and efficient.”
Hyundai Intrado concept car is the first Hyundai vehicle to be designed under the guidance of Peter Schreyer since he joined Hyundai Motor Group in January 2013 as President and Chief Design Officer. In November 2013, he became only the second designer to win the prestigious Golden Steering Wheel award.
Since joining the company, Schreyer has been exploring a daring new design direction for the company under the guiding principle of ‘New Thinking. New Possibilities.’
Commenting on the concept behind Intrado, Schreyer said: “Effortless and sensual, Intrado reflects the open-mindedness and constant renewal of the Hyundai brand. It also shows that Hyundai wants its customers to rediscover the joy and freedom that should be associated with personal mobility. That’s why this car has such purity of purpose – it’s logical, lovable and liveable.”
Inspiration -Hyundai Intrado was designed to combine intelligent design and advanced vehicle technologies to better meet the needs of drivers and passengers.
Hyundai took a clean-sheet approach to the design, developing a functional car that meets the essential needs of its users, but one that also pursues the removal of weight to increase performance and efficiency.
The design team took inspiration from aeronautical themes – Intrado allows the air to flow smoothly across its form, defining a more progressive interpretation of Hyundai’s established and well-received fluidic sculpture design philosophy.
Exterior design-The aeronautical theme is expressed through simple, voluminous surfaces, avoiding redundant decoration and ornamental details. The unique fenders form an extension of the main frame, condensing the front and rear bodywork. The door apertures and window frame of Intrado are flush to the frame, just like on an airplane, maximising efficiency.
The overall shape of Hyundai Intrado takes its form from the carbon fibre frame on which the car is based and hints at the technology beneath its skin. As a result the silhouette of Intrado is dynamic, with a sports car-like profile. The overall shape is simple, echoing the ethos of the whole vehicle – that only what is necessary should be included.
The exterior panels of Hyundai Intrado have been finished in two colours: a warm grey with cool silver highlights to underscore its design inception; and Beaufort Orange, a bright and vibrant hue that highlights the efficiency and aerodynamic purpose of the body panel to which it is applied.
Thomas Bürkle, Chief Designer at Hyundai Design Centre Europe, led the design team that created the Intrado: “In line with its promise of a motoring future that is more relevant to users’ lifestyles, we have given Intrado a distinctive exterior and interior shape, strongly influenced by the lightweight frame, that incorporates only what is necessary. The exterior is defined by a simple yet sporty profile which displays the latest interpretation of fluidic sculpture, while the interior shows how minimal ornamentation will perfectly fit into the varied lifestyles of the millennial generation.”
At the front of Hyundai Intrado, Hyundai has applied a new interpretation of the company’s family face hexagonal grille. Smoothed frame lines, which give the vehicle a more fluid aesthetic, sit vertical and proud to the front nose to yield a three-dimensional shape. To further set Intrado apart from production vehicles, the horizontal grille bars are subtly twisted to create a play between light and shadow.
The front lamps have taken the shape of an aircraft wing, continuing the aeronautical theme and adding further air flow efficiencies. Below the lamps sit air flow ‘guides’ which channel through to the vehicle’s wheel housing. By harnessing the power of the air, rather than fighting it, Intrado smoothes the air turbulence usually found within this area of the vehicle, further improving its aerodynamic efficiency.
At the rear, a sharply-formed spoiler located below the rear window is included to reduce the pressure exerted by the air flow, otherwise known as static pressure (Cp).
Interior design-The interior of Intrado is defined by a focus on usability and adaptability, and draws attention to the advanced materials and radical construction at the heart of the car to deliver the kind of functional beauty and emotional experience typically found on sporting equipment such as high-end mountain bikes or kitesurfing power kites.
The seals of opening panels shut directly against the central carbon frame, showcasing the carbon fibre whenever doors, hood or trunk are opened. Components that are usually concealed are highlighted, including the ‘see-through’ air vents and exposed frame onto which the seats clip directly.
To eliminate some of the complexities usually associated with conventional vehicle interiors, Hyundai took an innovative direction when fixing the seats to the structure. The seats are bolted directly to the carbon frame, removing unnecessary sliders or adjustors. The seat is fixed in place with the ergonomic interior already designed to suit day-to-day operation – however, Intrado can be readily adapted to meet occupants’ needs.
Structure - The super-lightweight structure of Hyundai Intrado is formed from a mixture of advanced materials, and demonstrates Hyundai’s desire to produce lighter, stronger cars that are even better to drive and simpler to repair.
The central carbon frame structure is constructed using new manufacturing and joining techniques that together have the potential to change the way cars are constructed. The strength and rigidity of this central structure also allow body panels to be constructed from any material, giving designers greater flexibility and aiding repairability. Lightweight steel impact structures further enhance crash performance and repair times.
Frame-At the core of Intrado’s pioneering frame are carbon-fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) sections that begin life as beams containing overbraided carbon fibre and flexible foam cores. The composition makes laying-up and bending into shape easy – no pre-forming steps are necessary - while the enclosed foam reduces frame mass and cost. A vacuum-assisted resin transfer moulding process is used to create the final material.
The frame is formed from precisely-shaped continuous loops made from the newly-formed material. These serve as self-contained modular frames for the roof, hood and even the entire aperture for the door on either side of the car – which are then bonded to each other along their lengths at ambient temperature. The seals of opening panels shut directly against these frames, further reducing weight and showcasing the carbon fibre whenever the doors, hood or trunk are opened.
By bonding the carbon loops along their lengths, rather than at cross-sections, Intrado’s frame is stronger and suffers from less torsional stresses, meaning the precision of the engineering remains constant. Additionally, the ‘open’ corners allow the designers greater flexibility.
This innovative new structure allows Hyundai Intrado’s designers and engineers to only include fixtures and fittings that are of essential function, resulting in an interior based on the driver’s real needs. The simplified frame also gives way to a light and spacious interior thanks, in part, to the reduction in the number of materials used in the cabin.
Running the length of Intrado is a ‘floating’ centre console beam. This beam provides Intrado with its unique strength as well as connecting the passengers and powertrain with the carbon frame. It serves as a mounting point for essential controls and protective padding, and also supports the frame’s integration with the fuel cell powertrain and the passengers.
Hyundai Intrado is also the result of collaboration with two of the world’s preeminent carbon fibre producers and is the first time a Hyundai model has been developed with carbon fibre as a core material.
Lotte Chemical supplied its unique carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP), which has been applied on the concept’s interior fabrics and exterior panels. The central beam running the length of the vehicle has also been supplied by Lotte, together with the headlamp housing which uses a biodegradable resin (polyethylene terephthalate), reducing the CO2 emitted during the manufacturing process by 30%.
Hyosung, using its patented in-house technology, supplied its high-performance TANSOME® carbon fibre for Intrado’s frame. This carbon fibre is considered to be among the world’s best in terms of strength and flexibility, and enabled designers and engineers to create a free-flowing form.
The unique qualities of Intrado make it more repairable than typical carbon fibre structures, as damaged sections, or parts of sections, can be used without the use of expensive tooling or ovens.
The strength and rigidity of Intrado’s central structure also allows body panels to be constructed from any material – giving designers greater flexibility and further aiding reparability.
By constructing Intrado with a variety of advanced materials, the engineering team achieved a significant saving in the overall weight of Intrado versus a comparative production vehicle. Despite the weight savings, Intrado presents no compromise in safety.
Sven Wittke, Senior Studio Engineer at Hyundai Design Centre Europe, commented, “This new frame could lead the way to the future of motoring by using cost-effective and strong materials that require less tools and repair time. Combined with its fuel-saving capabilities and increased vehicle dynamics, Intrado’s structure could change the way cars are made in the future.”
Exterior panels - The body panels are made of advanced super-lightweight steel from the company’s flagship Hyundai Steel plant in Korea. The flexibility offered by the advanced frame of Intrado has allowed the company to showcase its advances with steel as well as carbon fibre.
Hyundai Steel, the company’s world-class eco-friendly production plant, produces more than 20 million tonnes of steel every year, with a team of 300 metallurgists that focus on producing metal that’s stronger, lighter and longer lasting, as well as being cleaner to make. Hyundai is the only car manufacturer in the world with its own fully- integrated steel mill.
Next-generation hydrogen fuel cell powertrain delivers extended range
Hyundai Intrado is driven by a next-generation hydrogen fuel cell powertrain that is smaller and more powerful, building on insights gained from more than a decade of research and development into the energy field. Thanks to the efficiency of the fuel cell system and its low weight, Intrado has a range of more than 600 kilometres, yet emits only water.
Hyundai Intrado uses two high pressure hydrogen storage tanks capable of holding hydrogen pressurised to 700 bar. The first, smaller tank is found under the rear passenger bench with a second, larger tank located between the rear axles (under the trunk floor) for better weight distribution. Together, the two tanks can hold over 100 litres of hydrogen. Intrado converts and stores the power of the hydrogen fuel thanks to a 36 kW lithium-ion battery – the most powerful ever fitted to a fuel cell electric vehicle. The battery has been repackaged compared to previous applications and is now located across the floorpan, under the front seat bench.
In addition to increased range, Hyundai Intrado promises more responsive and agile driving dynamics, thanks to the reduced weight, which has been spread more evenly along the length of the car, lowering its centre of gravity.
The lightweight frame Intrado is built around integrates these technologies seamlessly to yield a more dynamic drive while minimising cabin intrusions.
Frank Meijer, Team Leader, FCEV & Infrastructure Development, Hyundai Motor Europe, commented: “The powertrain of Intrado emphasises the pioneering role Hyundai will take in future eco-mobility solutions. To fit in with the active lives of future customers, we needed to develop a fuel cell that offered long-distance mobility, without compromising day-to-day functionality. We challenged ourselves to repackage the powerplant of Intrado to not just deliver performance enhancements, but to provide a more engaging drive, which is why we took a two-tank approach, to better balance the weight of the vehicle.”
How it works -Fuel cells operate by turning chemical energy from hydrogen into electromechanical energy. Inside a fuel cell, a positive anode and negative cathode sandwich a polymer electrolyte membrane, and the process of creating an electrical current occurs in three stages:
Hydrogen gas flows over the anode, causing it to split into positively charged hydrogen ions and negatively charged electrons.
The polymer electrolyte membrane only allows positively charged ions through - the negatively charged electrons travel along an external circuit to the cathode, creating an electrical current.
At the cathode, electrons and positively charged hydrogen ions combine with oxygen (from air) creating H2O - water - which flows out of the cell as the only waste product.
Hyundai and hydrogen - The pioneering fuel cell technology showcased by Intrado is a development of the power unit found in the world’s first commercially-available hydrogen-powered vehicle, the Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell. Hyundai Motor is a leader in the field of fuel cell powertrains, having established its fuel cell research programme in 1998. Five years later the Polaris project began, which focused on the independent development of fuel stacks. Today, Hyundai operates one of the world’s largest and most advanced fuel cell research facilities, located in Mabuk, Korea.
Since 1998, Hyundai has developed four generations of fuel cell vehicles with the aim of mass-producing environmentally-friendly vehicles. This development programme has culminated in the ix35 Fuel Cell, which began leaving the production line January 2013.
Hyundai plans to manufacture several hundred units of the hydrogen-powered ix35 Fuel Cell by 2015, with limited mass production of several thousand units planned beyond 2015. The company is targeting public sector and private fleets with the car, and has already signed contracts to lease the ix35 Fuel Cell to municipal fleets in Denmark and Sweden. Additionally, since October 2011, the EU Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) in Brussels has been providing Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles to EU policy makers and the public in order to demonstrate the market readiness of fuel cell technology.
Frank Meijer, Team Leader, FCEV & Infrastructure Development, Hyundai Motor Europe, added: “Since 1998, Hyundai has invested substantially into fuel cell technology research and development and this programme has yielded four generations of world-class vehicles. Intrado features our next-generation fuel cell powertrain, which has not only been downsized, but now delivers increased range, power output and performance. To be considered a leader in your field, you have to act like a leader – and Hyundai has proven once again that it has the engineering brilliance to deliver a user experience that exceeds customers’ expectations.”
Wallpapers : Hyundai Intrado Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Concept 2014 (click on image to enlarge)