GM, Regione Piemonte explore fuel cell vehicle demonstration program

General Motors and the Italian regional government Regione Piemonte have outlined a framework agreement between GM, Politecnico di Torino and Regione Piemonte, under which they will collaborate on sustainable mobility research and education projects. The agreement may also include the launch of a fuel cell vehicle demonstration program in Italy.

GM’s fourth-generation fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV), the HydroGen4, took center stage at the recent inauguration of the new GM Engineering Center in Turin.

Regione Piemonte and GM are working together to overcome regulatory hurdles, make hydrogen fuel available, and develop a government framework that would enable a fleet of test cars to enter operation in Italy in 2010.

Mike Arcamone, vice president of GM Powertrain Europe, says the HydroGen4 program is an important part of GM’s overall advanced technology and vehicle electrification strategy.

‘With the support of Regione Piemonte, a small fleet of HydroGen4 fuel cell vehicles could take to the road next year. A demonstration program would provide GM with important real-world feedback on fuel cell technology and the driving experience,’ says Arcamone. ‘If everyone works together to support infrastructure development, investment and remove regulatory hurdles, we could see more HydroGen4 vehicles on the road, and take our first steps as a community towards truly sustainable mobility.’

A priority for Regione Piemonte is economic development based on knowledge and excellence, especially in clean technologies and their application in different fields.

The HydroGen4 vehicle is the culmination of more than 10 years’ development work with hydrogen and fuel cell technology. GM has deployed more than 100 vehicles of this type as part of its Project Driveway testing program in the US, with sister programs also running in Japan, Korea, China and Germany.

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