A French hydrogen-based society is another step closer to realisation following the news that Air Liquide, Idex, Société du Taxi Électrique Parisien (STEP) and Toyota are joining forces to develop hydrogen mobility in the Paris region.

The four companies are teaming up as part of a joint venture called HysetCo which aims to illustrate that hydrogen mobility is a suitable solution for passenger transportation.

This collaboration represents a major landmark in the development of the world’s first fleet of zero-emission hydrogen-powered taxis, Hype, which operates in Paris and throughout the Île-de-France region.

HysetCo will make it easier to roll out hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and their recharging infrastructure within this region in order to reach the objective of 600 Hype taxis by the end of 2020.

Toyota will deliver an additional 500 Mirais by the end of 2020, which will complete the existing fleet of 100 Hype vehicles.

“For the last three years, we have shown with Hype that hydrogen is a real solution for helping essential activities like taxis to eliminate emissions, thereby effectively fighting pollution in cities like Paris,” explained Mathieu Gardies, STEP’s President.

“Thanks to the launch of HysetCo, and the partnership with Toyota for the next 500 Mirais before the end of 2020, we will be able to ramp up our development and prepare a comprehensive hydrogen mobility solution with our partners, which will be offered to other transport operators on a bespoke basis by 2021, so that they too can achieve zero emissions.”

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Source: Air Liquide

Hype’s fleet of taxis will also be able to rely on a wider network of charging stations, following the recent opening of a new recharging point in Roissy, near Paris-Charles-de-Gaulle airport, which joins the existing ones (Paris-Orly, Les-Loges-en-Josas, and Pont de l’Alma).

“Air Liquide is convinced that hydrogen is one of the keys to reducing pollution in cities. To reach this objective, all industry stakeholders (producers, distributors, mobility experts, etc) must be aligned,” Pierre-Étienne Franc, Vice-President for Hydrogen Energy at Air Liquide, said.

“The partnership we are announcing with Hype, Idex, and Toyota materialises this shared ambition to work together for the common good.”

“There are already 100 hydrogen taxis in the streets of Paris using the four hydrogen recharging stations that we have built. Expanding this fleet to 600 taxis will contribute to improving the air quality in our capital by the end of 2020.”

“This great project brings technology, ecology, and the new economy together. All in service of reinventing the taxi, one of the main mobility means.”

Thierry Franck de Préaumont, IDEX’s President, echoed, “We are convinced that fuel cell electric vehicles will develop and that they will rapidly extend to heavy goods vehicles, due to limitations in battery storage capacity.”

“A national player in sustainable development, Idex is convinced that hydrogen will become an important link in the energy value chain and pays particular attention to innovative technologies for the interactive storage of energy at a local level in order to maximise the value of their interaction in real time.”

HysetCo’s mission is to promote the sector’s transition towards zero emissions, with an objective of zero emissions for taxis/VTCs by the 2024 Paris Olympic Games.

President and CEO of Toyota France, Didier Gambart, said, “Our involvement in HysetCo is a decisive step in the promotion of a hydrogen society. It is also an opportunity to lay the foundations for zero-emission mobility for Paris 2024; a sort of bridge with the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.”

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