The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has had its first encounter with a hydrogen-powered vehicle: the Hyundai Nexo. Tested out at the automaker’s request, the car, which is only available in California, came out on trumps, scoring a Top Safety Pick+ award.
In order to qualify for the top rating, a vehicle must achieve ‘Good’ ratings in the six crashworthiness tests, including small overlap front left and right, moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraints and seats. It also needs superior ratings for the front crash prevention and good headlight ratings. Needless to say the Nexo nailed it in all chapters.
“Its standard front crash prevention system earns a superior rating”, said the IIHS. “The vehicle avoided collisions in 12 mph and 25 mph (19-40 km/h) track tests and has a forward collision warning system that meets National Highway Traffic Safety Administration criteria.”
The 2019 Nexo has a starting price of $58,300 before incentives, without the destination charge. The base model features standard LED headlights, 17-inch alloy wheels, synthetic leather, heated and electrically adjustable front seats and a host of driving assistance systems like the automatic emergency braking, blind spot warning and adaptive cruise control.
Filling its tank with hydrogen, an proces that takes 5 minutes, gives it a driving range of up to 380 miles (612 km) in the Blue spec and 354 miles (570 km) in the Limited, which starts at $61,800. The two models have 161 hp (163 PS / 120 kW) and 291 lb-ft (394 Nm) of torque available on tap, for a 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) in 9.5 seconds.