BMW Hydrogen 7 finishes the Hydrogen Road Tour

The BMW Hydrogen 7 – a hydrogen-powered luxury sedan – ended a more than 4,000 mile cross-country journey in Los Angeles that featured hydrogen-powered cars by the world’s leading automakers in an event called the 2008 Hydrogen Road Tour. The purpose of the tour was to show that automakers and energy producers are doing their part to move away from fossil fuels to hydrogen, and showcase the cooperation among lawmakers, NGOs, the DOT, DOE and the industry.

BMW provided a fleet of four hydrogen-powered cars – two BMW Hydrogen 7 mono-fuel vehicles that use only liquid hydrogen and two BMW Hydrogen 7 bi-fuel vehicles that can switch from hydrogen to gasoline.

Logging a “strictly hydrogen” cruising range of over 200 miles, the BMW Hydrogen 7 mono-fuel completed the two-week, 31 city tour while leaving only a trail of water vapor behind. The 200-mile cruising range is equivalent to over 25mpg. In the BMW Hydrogen 7 bi-fuel vehicle, the cruising range topped 125 miles.

The Hydrogen Road Tour is a partnership with the U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of Energy, the California Fuel Cell Partnership and the National Hydrogen Association. In addition to BMW, participants included Daimler, GM, Honda, Hyundai-Kia, Nissan, Toyota, and VW. Providing clean, domestically produced hydrogen fuel for the tour were Linde, BMW’s hydrogen fuel partner for the Tour, and Air Products.

The tour fleet included the mono-fuel version of the BMW Hydrogen 7, equipped with a V12 internal combustion engine (ICE), which has been engineered to run exclusively on hydrogen. It was created to showcase the zero CO2 and low emissions potential and feasibility of a dedicated hydrogen internal combustion engine.

The Hydrogen 7’s V12 mono-fuel ICE produced no CO2 and near-zero emissions. In fact, the tailpipe emissions were so infinitesimal that they pushed the limits of current emission testing technology.

Independent authorities, including the Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), have confirmed these results. ANL conducted emission tests on BMW Hydrogen 7 mono-fuel vehicles in early March 2008 and found that not only were the emissions negligible, but when running, the vehicle actually cleaned the air.

Recent studies have also confirmed the water emitted by the Hydrogen 7 is safe to drink.

Exhaust from the mono-fuel Hydrogen 7 tested by FGL Environmental was found to be well within the limits set by the United States Environmental Protection Agency for safe drinking water standards. The Maximum Contaminant Limit (MCL), is the maximum limit set by the EPA for chemicals found in drinking water. Results showed the MCL from mono-fuel H7 emissions to be in compliance with the health safety standards.