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Audi's hydrogen concept car fuels up in four minutes

The h-tron quattro concept has a range of 372 miles.

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CES was a hotbed of car announcements this year, but luckily some surprises have been saved for the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Take Audi's h-tron quattro, a hydrogen-powered concept car with a Tesla-beating range of 372 miles. It has three fuel tanks hidden beneath the passenger or luggage compartments which can be replenished in just four minutes. The fuel cell has an output of up to 110 kW, supported by a lithium-ion battery which supplies a further 100 kW for short, temporary bursts of acceleration. While you're driving, this secondary power source then slowly recharges every time you tap the brake.

The car is more than just a quick-refuelling stamina champ though. It boasts a top speed of 124 mph and can accelerate from 0 to 62 mph in under seven seconds -- nothing race-worthy, but nippy enough for the freeway. The fuel cell and the high-voltage battery power two electric motors, which are located on the front and rear axles for 90 kW and 140 kW of power respectively. Rounding out the car's green credentials are a heat pump for the interior air conditioning and a solar roof that generates up to 320 watts of power, or an extra 620 miles of driving each year.

As a concept car, there's nothing to suggest this will ever reach production. Still, it's evidence that automakers are still tinkering with the idea of a (mostly) hydrogen-powered car -- which is important, if only to highlight that all-electric vehicles aren't the only alternative worth pursuing.

Audi H-Tron Quattro Concept | 2016 NAIAS | Beauty-Roll

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