Air Liquide, Idex, Société du Taxi Électrique Parisien (STEP) and Toyota have launched a joint venture called HysetCo to develop hydrogen mobility in the Paris region. It will also serve Hype, the fleet of fuel cell taxis, launched in 2015 during the COP21 and operated in Paris.
The partners describe this step as a “major landmark” for hydrogen transport in general and the further development of said fleet of hydrogen-powered taxis called Hype. It has been active throughout the Île-de-France region since 2015 and can draw so far on four H2 filling stations as an energy source. In addition to the existing sites in Paris-Orly, Les-Loges-en-Josas and Pont de l’Alma, another hydrogen filling station was recently added in Roissy near Charles-de-Gaulle airport.
The HysetCo joint venture has two specific objectives: the provision of hydrogen and the development of fuel cell vehicle applications. Among other things, the joint venture aims to accelerate the introduction of further FCEVs and the corresponding refuelling infrastructure, so that by the end of 2020 the H2 taxis can reach the 600 mark. The Hype fleet currently consists of 100 such vehicles. Toyota intends to supply a further 500 Mirai models for the planned increase.
Irrespective of the plans for the Paris region, Air Liquide has now also signed a declaration of intent with Hyundai, Nel, Nikola Motor, Shell and Toyota to test hydrogen fuelling components for heavy commercial vehicles. This cooperation aims to facilitate the standardisation and market introduction of fuel cell trucks. Jesse Schneider, Executive Vice President of Nikola Motor, sees the agreement as bringing together key industry players to evaluate tank hardware “to enable interoperability so that any HD FCEVs can fuel at our Hydrogen Stations and we can fill at any of theirs, just like Diesel today”. Nikola Motor is planning three FC trucks: the Nikola One and Two for the United States and the Nikola Tre for Europe.