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First Hyundai Tucson FCV Hits US Shores

The first fuel cell vehicle for Hyundai has arrived in the United States and should become available to the general public in the next few weeks. But you're not going to own this Tucson – it's only available as a lease.

According to Hyundai, "Under the … leasing program, approved lessees can drive Hyundai’s next-generation Tucson Fuel Cell for $499 per month, including unlimited free hydrogen refueling and 'At Your Service' valet maintenance at no extra cost. For the first time, retail consumers can now put a mass-produced, federally-certified hydrogen fuel cell vehicle in their driveways, with availability at three select Southern California Hyundai dealers: Tustin Hyundai, Win Hyundai in Carson, and Hardin Hyundai in Anaheim."

[Want to know more about the Tucson Fuel Cell Vehicle? Our 5 Facts About the Tucson FCV should answer some of the more basic questions.]

So, lets say you have a strong interest in the Tucson Fuel Cell and the $2999 to put down on a lease, you better make sure you live in Orange County, California, because that's the only place you're going to be able to lease the vehicle. Hyundai has to limit where the vehicle can be offered because of the limited fuel cell refueling infrastructure in the United States. California has plans to offer fuel cell stations from Los Angeles to San Francisco, which will eventually broaden the market – but not much.

There are actually a fair number of hydrogen refueling stations across the country but most are private at this point. SunHydro is building public refueling stations from Maine to Connecticut, which could make the Northeast the next prime area for fuel cell vehicles.

Hyundai says consumers have shown strong interest in the Tucson Fuel Cell leasing opportunity, with over 200,000 unique visitors to the Tucson Fuel Cell microsite at The manufacturer adds, "Customers interested in the Tucson Fuel Cell can indicate their interest (the first step in the ordering process) beginning today by visiting Availability of the Tucson Fuel Cell will expand to other regions consistent with the accelerating deployment of hydrogen refueling stations."