BMW has introduced the i8 hydrogen fuel cell research vehicle during the BMW Group Innovation Days 2015.
They did a very good job at keeping this a secret as it's only now we get to hear about a research vehicle that was largely completed back in 2012. The underpinnings are the same ones that served as a foundation for the i8, but instead of the plug-in hybrid setup this sinister-looking car adopts a hydrogen fuel cell setup. As a consequence, it has lost the three-cylinder 1.5-liter turbocharged gasoline engine and instead it gained a fuel stack.
The necessary energy comes from cryogenically-stowed hydrogen inside a cylindrical tank that sits down the center line of the vehicle's platform and also from the oxygen coming from cooled air. The rear-mounted electric motor gets its electricity from the fuel stack and this complex arrangement grants the research vehicle with a 242 bhp (188 kW) output.
Aside from receiving a different hardware setup, the special i8 also looks different than the regular model as it has a more angular front fascia and a simpler rear end while the body wears a menacing matte black paint.
We remind you BMW and Toyota have a partnership to work on fuel cell technologies, with an emphasis on hydrogen tanks, motors, batteries and fuel cell stacks.