Hyperion XP-1 Prototype First Look: Giving Hydrogen Performance a Shove

Hyperion XP-1 Prototype First Look: Giving Hydrogen Performance a Shove

Like Seinfeld’s Frank Costanza on Festivus, Hyperion chief government officer Angelo Kafantaris aired his grievances to MotorTrend concerning the public’s view on hydrogen-powered autos.  “[People] think electric is different from hydrogen,” Kafantaris instructed us in a current cellphone interview. “We really need to explain to them that electric is the future and hydrogen is the way to get there, not heavy batteries. ” 

Sometimes, although, it is higher to indicate than inform, which is what Hyperion hopes to realize with its forthcoming XP-1 hydrogen-electric car. Unveiled in prototype kind, the low-slung XP-1 is Hyperion’s approach of displaying that hydrogen-electric powertrains provide “all the same benefits of [a] battery-electric vehicle [with] none of the drawbacks. ” 

Speed and Range

If the technical specs of the XP-1 prototype maintain true to the forthcoming manufacturing mannequin, then Hyperion’s hypercar actually achieves its objective of displaying off hydrogen’s efficiency capabilities. According to Hyperion, the all-wheel-drive XP-1 prototype manages a Bugatti Chiron-rivaling run to 60 mph of below 2.2 seconds. Hold the accelerator pedal down lengthy sufficient, and the XP-1’s proton trade membrane gasoline cell (a sort additionally used within the Toyota Mirai) and its three-speed gearbox permit it to succeed in a claimed high velocity of greater than 221 mph. That’s a lot quick, even when it falls in need of the 16-cylinder Bugatti’s 261-mph high velocity (or the greater than 300-mph determine of the Chiron Super Sport 300+).

More spectacular, although, is the XP-1’s reported driving vary of 1,016 miles. Credit for that determine goes to the automobile’s claimed curb weight of below 2,275 kilos (a Mazda MX-5 Miata, in the meantime, ideas the scales at 2,341 kilos), aerodynamic design, and a beneficiant capability of hydrogen saved onboard. Hyperion stays mum on the variety of kilograms of hydrogen the XP-1 holds, however we might wager it is someplace within the double digits. For reference, the 3,990-pound Hyundai Nexo manages a driving vary of 380 miles from its 6.three kg hydrogen tank. 

Regardless, filling up the XP-1’s hydrogen tank should be a faster affair than charging a battery-electric car. Finding a hydrogen station, nevertheless, stays a tough (if not not possible) job in most locations. Hyperion hopes to ease that search (in addition to decrease the price of hydrogen) by working with companions to construct a community of hydrogen stations all through the nation. How quickly this objective is achieved stays to be seen.

Hyperion Fleek

Complementing the XP-1’s straight-line efficiency and driving vary is its putting design. Beautiful, the XP-1 just isn’t, and the automobile’s exterior look is each busy and incohesive. 

That mentioned, Hyperion’s nonetheless managed to create a automobile that turns heads. Swollen fenders emphasize the prototype’s huge wheels and brief overhangs, whereas turbine-like particulars add drama to the automobile’s center-mounted exhaust ideas and physique aspect trim. Additional visible drama comes courtesy of the XP-1’s rear buttresses that bleed from the fighter-jet-like glass cover into the physique’s sides. Scissor-style doorways permit entrance into the cabin, which options gesture controls for working most of the automobile’s options. 

With solely 300 XP-1s earmarked for manufacturing, this hydrogen-powered hypercar will certainly be a uncommon sight. And probably an expensive one, too. The firm is not prepared to speak numbers, but. (Nor the place it plans to construct the automobile, though Hyperion claims it is going to assemble the XP-1 within the United States.) Nevertheless, we anticipate the XP-1 to sport a excessive six-figure sticker value. 

That’s assuming the XP-1 sees the sunshine of day, although. As promising as Hyperion’s hypercar is, it is nonetheless a prototype. Producing a salable car—but alone a hydrogen-powered automobile able to greater than 221 mph—requires Festivus-like feats of power. However, if all goes in response to plan, then deliveries of the XP-1 ought to start in early 2022.

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