The iX5 was not BMW’s only hydrogen-fueled vehicle to attend the 2023 Goodwood Festival of Speed as the H2R was also there. One of the strangest vehicles to take part in the 30th edition of the popular event, the 19-year-old concept (yes, it debuted in 2004) has a completely different setup compared to the electric SUV. It uses a 6.0-liter V12 from the 7 Series (760i E65) instead of a fuel cell.

Although it was in no hurry to go up the famous hill, the 2004 H2R was rated back in the day at just six seconds for the 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) sprint and a top speed of 187.62 mph (301.94 km/h). BMW developed the unusual one-seater with its carbon fiber body in just 10 months and went on to take down nine world records.

Nearly two decades later, the H2R still looks futuristic, and it also makes wonderful V12 music. Fun fact – the initial plan was to have the concept car run on gasoline before the development team decided to pursue hydrogen. While 232 hp is nothing impressive in today’s horsepower wars, the concept was impressively light, tipping the scales at only 3,440 pounds (1,560 kilograms). Mind you, that figure includes a full tank of hydrogen and the driver. It had a remarkably low drag coefficient of 0.21 courtesy of the Designworks subsidiary.

The BMW H2R wasn’t the fastest car at Goodwood last weekend but it certainly caught the attention with its sleek shape and appealing engine soundtrack while emitting nothing but vapor. The unconventional concept went on to serve as the test bed for the Hydrogen 7, which had a limited production run of 100 vehicles that were temporarily given to VIPs to spread awareness of the zero-emission hydrogen powertrain.

For a trip down memory lane, here are all the records it took down on a single day at the Miramas Proving Ground in the south of France back in 2004.

Time listed in seconds, speed listed in mph
– Flying-start kilometer: 11.993 186.520
– Flying-start mile: 19.999 180.014
– Standing-start 1/8 mile: 9.937 45.285
– Standing-start ¼ mile: 14.967 60.132
– Standing-start ½ kilometer: 17.342 64.495
– Standing-start mile: 36.850 97.693
– Standing-start 10 miles: 221.773 162.328
– Standing-start kilometer: 26.749 83.627
– Standing-start 10 kilometers: 146.409 152.787

Source: Goodwood Festival of Speed / Facebook