Car buyers interested in alternative fuel vehicles will have a new option starting next year.
Korean car giant Hyundai will begin selling a hydrogen fuel cell version of its Tucson SUV in 2014. It will be the first mass-produced hydrogen-powered vehicle sold in the U.S., the Associated Press notes.
The new Tucson SUVs will initially only appear in Southern California, but Hyundai plans to expand sales to other U.S. regions — as soon as refueling stations are built. California currently has nine hydrogen fueling stations and the state has committed to funding the construction of 100 more by 2023.
Hydrogen-powered cars have been the subject of research and industry promises for more than a decade, but have been dogged by high production costs and safety worries.
Still, a number of automakers, including General Motors (GM), Toyota (TM) and Honda (HMC) have continued to develop hydrogen fuel cell technology.