The first fuel cell car to be allowed on public roads in France is to be powered by a tyre company.
A city runabout model using a hydrogen pack developed by scientists at Michelin has become the country’s first passenger car to win certification for use.
By the end of the year, the F-CITY model built by FAM will use a fuel cell range extender created at Michelin’s research centre in Switzerland. At present, the two-seater car is powered by nickel hydride batteries.
The first pack to link a low capacity lithium ion battery with a hydrogen tank, the Michelin unit weighs 120kg and promises a range of more than 112 miles from one kilogram of compressed gas.
“The regular battery pack is twice as heavy and drives the car only half the distance, so this represents a big step forward,” said physics and chemistry head Antonio Delfino.
Public utilities are to pilot the Michelin-powered cars before FAM puts the model in the showrooms.
Author: Maurice Glover