Fleet News

Ikea puts fuel cell Zafira through delivery trials

SWEDISH furniture giant Ikea is trialling a fuel cell vehicle for deliveries in Germany. The company is using a HydroGen3 vehicle, which is based on the Opel Zafira and runs on liquid hydrogen.

Two employees from Ikea’s Berlin-Spandau store have been trained to collect data to be analysed as part of the test while they make customer service trips.

Peter Betzel, deputy managing director, Ikea Germany, said: ‘Our basic principle is to keep any environmentally harmful effects in all areas of activity as low as possible. We are therefore pleased that by using this vehicle for Spandau service trips, we can contribute to bringing this technology a step closer to day-to-day suitability.

‘We see a great need for environmentally-friendly cars. If we are able to use hydrogen as an energy carrier on a large scale in the future, then motoring will be made far more environmentally compatible. Ikea is happy to support this goal.’

Opel executives say the HydroGen3 demonstrates the high level of development already reached, but that a lot more work is needed before fuel cell vehicles can be produced in large numbers profitably. Opel managing director Hans H Demant said: ‘We want the society of the future to remain mobile without greenhouse gas emissions. General Motors and Opel have invested one billion dollars in the development of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies to date.’

The trial is part of the Clean Energy Partnership Berlin (CEP) hydrogen demonstration project, a public-private partnership initiative supported by the German federal Government and 10 partner companies.

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