If we ignore the obvious fact that we are comparing a large SUV with a low sedan, then practically the same! At its core, it is still an electric drive that is quiet and smooth, no matter where it gets its energy from. So you enjoy unprecedented comfort on a leisurely ride, and when you step on it, you get an instant pull that squeezes you into the seat – perfect for overtaking or joining a faster lane.

However, there are certain differences. When Nexo needs power for its electric motors, it must first generate it. But so that you don’t have to wait for a pull-out like with a regular combustion engine (and also to have somewhere to store the energy obtained from recuperation), the Nexo has a battery with a capacity of 1.56 kWh (it comes directly from the original Ioniq Hybrid) – it supplies energy as soon as you step on the gas, a fuel cell meanwhile (and with a soft distant hiss) he creates another. In fact, the driving experience with both cars is practically the same.

Photo: Lukáš Kukla

The hydrogen Nexo must first generate energy.

However, the battery technology hidden in the floor gives the Ioniq 6 the advantage of a well-stretched wheelbase (it is 160 mm longer, even though its body is 185 mm shorter) and also lowers the center of gravity and centralizes the mass in the axis of rotation. This means that the Ioniq 6 is more glued to the asphalt and turns more nimbly, while the Nexo, with its heavy “power plant” in the bow and hydrogen tanks around the rear axle, is more like a conventional car.

Photo: Lukáš Kukla, Garáž.cz

The Ioniq 6 benefits from a low profile and battery pack in the floor.

A more interesting question is how much they cost to drive. That’s why my colleague Standa and I set out on the test circuit – the 77-kilometer route alternated between highways, county roads and urban hopping – to get a comprehensive idea of ​​how both cars would perform in real traffic. We rode right behind each other so that no one had the advantage of a quieter traffic and we kept the pace “human” meaning no racing or “Mr. Hat” style. And the result?

The Hyundai Nexo managed the given route with a consumption of 0.9 kg of hydrogen per 100 kilometers, which is a very respectable number (the competing Mirai also runs around one kilogram). However, you currently pay 278 crowns for one kilo of hydrogen, which means an average price of 2.5 CZK/km, i.e. more expensive than with diesel (on average approx. 1.5 CZK/km) or petrol (approx. 2 CZK/km).

Photo: Lukáš Kukla

Nexo drives for approx. 2.50 CZK/km. You will drive quite a few kilometers on the way to the gas station, of which there are only four in the country so far.

The Hyundai Ioniq 6 managed the same route with a consumption of 13.7 kWh / 100 km, which is excellent among electric cars (both cars were helped by the warmer weather at the time of the test). But calculating the price of operation will be more complicated – you can easily charge from a home wallbox for around 4.50 CZK/kWh (then you drive for 0.60 CZK/km), in a public area with the universal Charge myHyundai card (AC charging: 11, 4 CZK/kWh, DC charging: 14.2 CZK/kWh, HPC charging: 20 CZK/kWh) one kilometer can cost you 1.50 CZK (AC), 2.00 CZK (DC), or even 2, 70 (HPC). However, if you contract directly with station operators (ČEZ, PRE and others), you can charge even cheaper.

Photo: Lukáš Kukla, Garáž.cz

The aerodynamic Ioniq 6 can be really efficient. But how long it will run depends on how you charge it.

One card rules them all

The fragmented network makes life a little more complicated for electric motorists – there are several operators with their own contracts and their own price list. Today roaming is already possible (it also applies abroad), meaning that, for example, with a ČEZ card you can also use a PRE and E.ON charger (and many other operators even outside the Czech Republic), but charging prices outside the ČEZ network are much higher. A smart solution is to have a contract with several companies (ČEZ and PRE and you have covered most of the network in the Czech Republic).

But not everyone wants to deal with it and not everyone wants to compare prices in a complicated way (especially when traveling abroad). Each car manufacturer therefore offers its customers their own card (such as Charge myHyundai), which identifies them in a very wide network of contractual partners, they clearly know the charging price in advance and only have to pay one invoice at the end of the month. It’s not always the most convenient, but it’s definitely more transparent and, above all, more convenient.

Foto: Hyundai

If you don’t want to have multiple contracts, apps and cards to charge, just get one directly from the car manufacturer, such as Charge myHyundai.

Electric car owners who can charge at home or at work can therefore drive very cheaply (or even for free if they have solar panels or a very benevolent boss). Charging in the public grid requires a bit of planning, as frequent stops at HPCs are quite expensive – they make the most sense on long journeys when you need to quickly top up your energy for the next section. In normal use, however, it is better to be tactical and look for AC and DC chargers and connect, for example, at stops in shopping centers when shopping or going to the cinema, when the car is parked idle for a long time anyway.

Photo: Lukáš Kukla

With a battery electric car, you can drive cheaper and recharge more conveniently.

With a hydrogen car, your reasoning is easier – or much more complicated. Do you have any of the current four filling stations nearby (2x Prague, Ostrava and Litvínov, in 2025 there should be a total of twelve)? No? So forget about the hydrogen car. And even if you live a few kilometers from one of them, do the math carefully first – Nexo has a paper range of 666 kilometers, which defines its radius quite clearly. The fear of limited range will therefore be much more intense. And in any case, you will not drive cheaply.