Fuel cells enter luxury market

Portrait Thierry Bolloré, © Jaguar Land Rover
© Jaguar Land Rover

Support for hydrogen came from unexpected quarters in 2021. British luxury vehicle manufacturer Jaguar reported last June that its Land Rover brand would be developing a prototype of a hydrogen-powered Defender. CEO Thierry Bolloré had previously announced plans to decarbonize all vehicle models by 2036 as part of his Reimagine strategy. However, the first all-electric version of an SUV is not due to launch until 2024 at the earliest. Nick Rogers, who heads up JLR’s product development, told vision mobility magazine: “It’s absolutely really, really important; we truly believe that hydrogen has a real place and opportunity, particularly in the bigger vehicles.”

Similar noises are being heard from Russia. It was there, at an economic forum in September 2021, that luxury automaker Aurus presented its hydrogen-propelled car. An SNA journalist reported that Aurus Hydrogen has a range of over 370 miles (600 kilometers). According to a statement by Denis Manturov from the Russian trade ministry, this model, which has been developed by the Russian automotive research institute NAMI, could go into series production within a few years. Nevertheless, this would initially take the form of a hybrid vehicle.

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