The world’s largest FCEV taxi fleet has been given the green light in France, with Paris-based electric taxi start-up Société du Taxi Electrique Parisien (STEP) and Hyundai Motor committing to bringing 60 additional ix35 Fuel Cell taxis to the streets of Paris.

Hydrogen Powered Electric (‘hype’) serves the greater Paris area and is the world’s largest fuel cell taxi fleet, currently with five fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) in operation. The 60 new ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles will not add to the 17,000 taxis already in circulation in and around Paris – rather they will replace petrol and diesel-powered cars.

The memorandum of understanding was signed at a public H2 fuel station operated by Tier One player Air Liquide in Offenbach am Main, Germany. It is the second station to be installed by the industrial gas corporation in the European country, with an additional nine sites currently under construction and due to be commissioned in 2017.

Hydrogen (H2) cars can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% compared to traditional combustion vehicles, with this new fleet expected to save more than 800 tonnes of CO2 per year in exhaust emissions.

The ix35 Fuel Cell is the world’s first mass-produced and commercially available FCEV, able to travel up to 594kms on a full tank of H2. There are currently more than 300 Hyundai ix35 FCEVs on European roads in 12 countries – more than all the FCEVs of other manufacturers combined.

The ix35 Fuel Cell deployed are partially funded by the Hydrogen Mobility Europe Project, which in turn is subsidised by public private partnership Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU).