car news

Petrol or diesel unnecessary: this hydrogen engine produces 410 hp

October 20, 2023

Functional prototype of AVL

Granted, it is still a prototype, but a functional prototype. The hydrogen engine was developed by AVL’s motorsports division, but the idea behind it also applies to regular street models.

Goodbye bias

AVL says that the new power source dispenses with the prejudice that hydrogen combustion cannot result in high performance figures and poor combustion. Normally hydrogen is injected, but this produces unstable combustion. AVL’s system injects extra water in advance, eliminating that problem. So the engine has fuel injection that injects water into the intake air of the engine. This arrangement eliminates unwanted premature ignition of hydrogen and provides what is known as stoichiometric combustion. That is, the engine burns the fuel completely.

AVL hydrogen engine

Objective achieved

The company already announced in late 2022 that this engine was under development. The goal was to develop a hydrogen combustion engine with an output of 300 kW (402 hp) and 500 Nm of torque. That goal has been amply achieved, as the prototype kicks out to 410 hp, as demonstrated on a test bench. The powerplant delivers its maximum power at 6,500 rpm. Between 3,000 and 4,000 rpm, 500 Nm of pulling power is available.

Test work

AVL’s next step is to install this power source in a car, to perform test work on a track. In this way, the viability of the technology can be further tested.

AVL hydrogen engine
AVL hydrogen engine