Groupe Renault and Plug Power have signed a memorandum of understanding to create a 50/50 joint venture (JV) to develop a range of hydrogen-powered vans.
Through the new standalone JV, which should be finalised by the end of the first half of this year and will be based in France, Groupe Renault and Plug Power aim to be key players in the research and development (R&D), transformation, manufacturing and sale of fuel cell-powered vehicles and hydrogen turn-key solutions in the coming years.
The brands are targetting a 30% share of the fuel cell-powered van market in Europe.
Renault and Plug Power intend to establish an Innovation Centre for the development of fuel cell technology and hydrogen fuel cell vans based on existing and future Groupe Renault platforms.
Initially, the focus will be on the heavy van segment, utilising the Trafic and Master vehicle platforms, with the first hydrogen-powered vans expected to be deployed on pilot fleets later this year
Luca de Meo, CEO of Renault, said: “This joint venture project is fully aligned with our strategy to offer market ready H2 solutions for LCVs.
“With Plug Power, we will build a unique end-to-end fuel cell value chain and offer turnkey solutions for customers including vehicles, refuelling stations and decarbonised hydrogen delivery.
“With this project, our ambition is to position France as a bridgehead of industrial, technical and commercial development in this key technology, and to strengthen our leadership in Europe as our objective is to become the European leader in fuel cell LCV.”