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BMW Unveils New Lightweight Hydrogen Concept Vehicle

April 21, 2008

MUNICH, GERMANY – BMW has unveiled a new concept vehicle that can run solely on lightweight hydrogen. A previous version of its Hydrogen 7 concept car was a bi-fuel design, taking both gasoline and what many experts believe is the fuel of the future, according to


In the previous version of the BMW Hydrogen 7, if the lightweight gas wasn’t available, a motorist could switch to gasoline and keep running. However, the car’s V-12 powertrain had to be compromised to handle both fuels. And that impacted performance, mileage, and emissions, according to BMW officials.

The tiniest amount of NOx does come out of the tailpipe, the natural result of the compression-ignition cycle in an internal combustion engine. But, “The BMW Hydrogen 7’s emissions were only a fraction of SULEV level, making it one of the lowest emitting combustion engine vehicles that have been manufactured,” said Thomas Wallner, a mechanical engineer who leads Argonne’s hydrogen vehicle testing activities, as quoted by “Moreover, the car’s engine actively cleans the air. Argonne’s testing shows that the Hydrogen 7’s 12-cylinder engine actually shows emissions levels that, for certain components, such as Non Methane Organic Gases (NMOG’s) and Carbon Monoxides (CO’s), are cleaner than the ambient air that comes into the car’s engine.”




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