Hydrogen as standard at PEUGEOT
Going ever further in its quest to drastically reduce its vehicles’ local emissions, from 2021 PEUGEOT is becoming one of the very first manufacturers to offer, in addition to its combustion engine and battery electric models in the compact utility vans segment, an electric version powered by a hydrogen fuel cell as standard, comprising:
- A fuel cell which produces the electricity needed to drive the vehicle thanks to the hydrogen on board the tank,
- A high-voltage lithium-ion rechargeable battery with a capacity of 10.5 kWh that can be recharged from the electricity grid and which also powers the electric engine during certain driving phases.
The new PEUGEOT e-EXPERT Hydrogen has therefore become the latest symbol of the brand’s “Extended power of choice” strategy, which gives each customer the option to choose from a wide range of engines, the one that is best suited to his or her own use.
The hydrogen fuel cell electric version is testament to the rapid deployment of the Peugeot EXPERT range’s electrified offering. After the introduction in 2020 of the battery-powered e-EXPERT model, which was voted International Van of the Year in early 2021 and is the sixth PEUGEOT vehicle to win this prestigious award since 1992.
The new PEUGEOT e-EXPERT stands out for:
- Its ability to cover all distances without local CO2 emissions,
- Its ability to fill up with hydrogen in 3 minutes for a range of over 400 km in the WLTP homologation cycle (currently undergoing approval),
- A charging socket for the high-voltage battery,
- Two lengths available (Standard and Long) with the same loading volume characteristics as the diesel and battery electric versions,
- Up to 6.1 m³ load volume,
- Up to 1,100 kg payload,
- Up to 1,000 kg towing capacity.
Hydrogen fuel cell technology responds to the ever more numerous and complex expectations and needs of professional customers, offering greater freedom in their daily work. It enables:
- Greater driving range, which is vital given that the vast majority of compact vans operate in suburban areas and densely populated city centres, where there is increasingly strong demand for zero-emission solutions,
- Complete preservation of one of the essential functions of light commercial vehicles: the ability to transport bulky and heavy objects,
- Unprecedented logistical flexibility and optimised use.
The “mid-power plug-in hydrogen fuel cell electric” solution combines the advantages of hydrogen, battery technology and electric traction.
The hydrogen in the tank supplies the fuel cell, which produces the electricity needed to drive the vehicle over long distances, while the high-voltage battery provides the power needed to ensure dynamic performance, among other things. The whole system is incorporated into the vehicle in such a way that no compromises have been made in terms of volume or payload.
Hydrogen is now becoming a key pillar in the energy transition, with the announcement of numerous international projects. The ecosystem is particularly developing in Europe and investments made by the European Clean Hydrogen Alliance to promote this solution are estimated at around €60 bn. The number of hydrogen stations in Europe is steadily growing and the PEUGEOT brand is working directly with energy suppliers to offer packaged solutions.
A new-generation technology
Based on the EMP2 (Efficient Modular Platform), the new PEUGEOT e-EXPERT Hydrogen is a fully electric vehicle, combining two on-board electrical energy sources.
This technology is based on:
- A hydrogen fuel cell, located in the engine compartment at the front of the vehicle, which supplies electricity to the electric motor by combining the hydrogen in the tank and oxygen in the air. Only water vapour is released from the exhaust pipe.
- A permanent-magnet electric motor, with a maximum power of 100 kW and delivering maximum torque of 260 Nm. Located on the front axle, this electric powertrain is similar to that of the PEUGEOT e-EXPERT (battery electric model), which is particularly characterised by its gearbox adapted to the loading demands placed on commercial vehicles.
- A high-voltage lithium-ion battery, located under the cab seats, has a capacity of 10.5 kWh and power of 90 kW.
- An 11 kW three-phase on-board charger, located in the motor compartment.
- A system of tanks comprising three hydrogen storage cylinders located under the floor, with a total capacity of 4.4 kg at a pressure of 700 bar.
The new PEUGEOT e-EXPERT Hydrogen offers a total driving range of up to 400 km according to the WLTP (Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Procedures) homologation protocol, broken down as follows:
- 350 km from the hydrogen fuel cell,
- 50 km from the high-voltage battery.
The high-voltage battery (10.5 kWh) is recharged via the charging socket on the left front wing.
The 11 kW three-phase on-board charger provides the following charging times:
- from an 11 kW (32A) Wall Box: full charge in less than an hour,
- from a reinforced socket (16A): full charge in three hours,
- from a standard socket (8A): full charge in six hours.
The various operating phases of the mid-power plug-in hydrogen fuel cell electric system are:
- At start-up and at low speed, the high-voltage battery alone provides the electric engine with the power it needs for traction.
- At steady speed the fuel cell supplies the energy directly to the electric motor.
- During acceleration, overtaking or hill climbing the fuel cell and the high-voltage battery are combined to supply energy to the motor.
- During braking and deceleration, the electric motor recharges the high-voltage battery.
The power is available as soon as the vehicle is started, for immediate responsiveness, free of vibration, noise or odours, without changing gear and, of course, without CO2 emissions. All that is released by the system is water vapour from the exhaust pipe.
To ensure the safety of pedestrians, in built-up areas and at speeds of up to 30 km/h, a sound signal goes off to indicate the vehicle is approaching in forward and reverse gear.
So that users can enjoy their vehicle with complete peace of mind, the high-voltage battery is guaranteed for at least 70% of its load capacity for eight years or 160,000 km.
The cockpit of the new PEUGEOT e-EXPERT Hydrogen
In the driving position, the central console is designed to house:
- the perfectly integrated and ergonomic “e-Toggle” gearbox control, providing access to the Park/Reverse/Neutral/Drive and Brake functions,
- the selector for the three driving modes: Eco/Normal/Power,
- the electric parking brake control,
- a storage compartment at the top,
- a side storage net next to the electric parking brake support.
The new PEUGEOT e-Expert Hydrogen offers three driving modes from the mode selector:
- Eco (60 kW, 190 Nm): for better range
- Normal (80 kW, 210 Nm): optimal for everyday
- Power (100 kW, 260 Nm): to optimize performance when carrying heavy loads.
Two braking modes are available, with suitable battery regeneration:
- Moderate, for a similar feeling to a combustion engine vehicle,
- Increased (accessible via the “B” push button for “Brake” located on the gearbox control), for enhanced deceleration when the accelerator pedal is released.
The new PEUGEOT e-Expert Hydrogen is fitted with an electric parking brake. As well as freeing up floor space, this automatic feature adds comfort and peace of mind to everyday driving.
The display is evolving in order to share the information required for management of a fuel cell electric vehicle:
- a power meter for viewing the level of energy consumption (ECO, energy optimisation or POWER, maximum power or CHARGE for energy recovery),
- a hydrogen level gauge,
- a battery power level gauge,
- a colour matrix for displaying on-board computer information and range.