Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility grabs ‘Watt d‘Or 2021‘ for advancing Swiss decarbonisation efforts

In News, Hyundai4 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineJanuary 21, 2021

Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility (HHM) and its business partners were recognised on January 7 with the “Watt d‘Or 2021”, an annual accolade by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy that honours innovative energy champions in Switzerland.

HHM and its business partners – Hydrospider AG, H2 Energy AG, and Association pro H2 Mobility Switzerland Association – were conferred the prestigious distinction in the “Energy-efficient Mobility” category for their advancements in energising the nation‘s hydrogen-powered commercial mobility sector.

HHM was established in April 2019 as a joint venture between Hyundai Motor Company and H2 Energy AG. Its main business activity is renting out emission-free commercial vehicles (Hyundai XCIENT Fuel Cell heavy-duty truck) with the aim of decarbonising the commercial mobility ecosystems of Switzerland and the broader Europe.

The partnership between HHM and the aforementioned companies has been dubbed the “Hydrogen Champions League” for introducing hydrogen to freight transport and logistics, as well as creating a new business model encompassing hydrogen-powered trucks, hydrogen refuelling stations and hydrogen production and shipping.

Currently in Switzerland, the coalition has 50 units of Hyundai XCIENT Fuel Cell trucks – the world‘s first fuel cell electric heavy-duty truck – which are in the process of being rented out to commercial customers. The plan is to have 1,600 XCIENT units in operations by 2025.

“We are very proud that the Swiss Federal Office of Energy has recognised our effort to establish the first commercially-viable zero-emission hydrogen network,” said Mark Freymüller, CEO of HHM. “Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility has always advocated that the future of mobility has to be a mix of different technologies, with hydrogen fuel cell vehicles playing a major role alongside battery electric vehicles. We are happy that we are able to demonstrate what this vision looks like in reality here in Switzerland, and we will continue to do so in the future.”

With its emission-free hydrogen cycle, the private-sector initiative is making a major contribution to Switzerland‘s decarbonisation efforts in the heavy-goods transport industry; a fuel cell electric heavy-duty truck annually travelling around 80,000km achieves yearly savings of 64 to 65 metric tonmes of carbon dioxide. Furthermore, by producing green hydrogen exclusively from renewable energies such as hydro, solar and wind, the coalition has tangibly boosted the supply and demand for hydrogen in an eco-friendly, emission-free way.

Hyundai Motor has long regarded hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles as a vital component of future mobility alongside battery electric vehicles. Like diesel and gasoline cars, hydrogen and battery electric vehicles go side by side in a future of emission-free mobility solutions. This advanced breakthrough, using hydrogen as a storage medium, will pave the way for the environment-conscious, electrified motorsport world.

Seen more broadly, Hyundai Motor has invested significant energy in nurturing a worldwide hydrogen society as part of its global hydrogen strategy. With the simultaneous increase in refuelling capabilities and progress in fuel cell technology, the company plans to produce 700,000 units of fuel cell systems annually by 2030.