Five-star crash rating for hydrogen fuel Hyundai

Euro NCAP has tested a hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicle for the first time and it passed with flying colours. The Hyundai NEXO achieved a five-star rating in the crash test which is designed to give consumers a realistic idea of the safety performance of popular models sold in Europe.

The safety ratings of six other new cars were revealed yesterday, including the Lexus ES hybrid and the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class, which also received five stars.

Michiel van Ratingen, Secretary General of Euro NCAP, said that the Hyundai NEXO and Lexus ES “point the way for future powertrains”. He added that “Euro NCAP will work to ensure that safety performance as well as energy efficiency remains at the top of the manufacturers’ agenda”.

Earlier this month, Hyundai teamed up with University College London to show how the NEXO actually cleans the air as it drives. The demonstration showed how the vehicle’s advanced purification system cleans 26.9kg of air per hour – the same amount that 42 adults breathe in the same amount of time.


With the NEXO, Hyundai has successfully demonstrated that alternative fuelled cars need not pose a risk to car safety.

Matthew Avery – Director of Research at Thatcham Research


There were concerns, however, surrounding the safety of the Hyundai NEXO given that hydrogen has such a low ignition point. The hydrogen is stored in a pressurised tank and is used to power a fuel cell that converts the gas into electricity. These latest test results from Euro NCAP will help assuage fears regarding the use of the gas.

Matthew Avery, Director of Research at Thatcham Research, Euro NCAP’s testing partner, said: “With the NEXO, Hyundai has successfully demonstrated that alternative fuelled cars need not pose a risk to car safety.”


Image courtesy of Euro NCAP: Frontal Full Width test takes place at 50km/h, 100% of the width of the car striking a rigid barrier

The NEXO achieved scores of 94% for adult occupants and 87% for child occupants in the safety test. Andreas-Christoph Hofmann, Vice President of Marketing and Product for Hyundai Motor Europe HQ, said that these results are “further evidence of our industry-leading position in the field of future mobility.”

He continued: “We are not only a pioneer in bringing future mobility onto the streets, but our cars are also among the safest. The Euro NCAP rating confirms our commitment to provide customers and other road users with the highest level of safety and innovative mobility solutions.”

Michiel van Ratingen concluded that the results from the seven new cars tested, which all received four- or five-star ratings, were “satisfying” and “solid”. He added that Euro NCAP is “pleased that cars continue to perform well in the AEB tests, including for pedestrians and cyclists. It is very welcome to see manufacturers rising to Euro NCAP’s challenge of effective vulnerable road user protection.”

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