The Hydrogen Village occupies a much larger area within the overall village, at the heart of the 24H Le Mans circuit. This is a sign of the importance of hydrogen for the Automobile Club de l’Ouest. It also reflects the dynamism of the industry and the diversity of its solutions.
Located next to the Manufacturers’ Village, the Hydrogen Village can be seen from afar. And there is plenty to see inside. When entering, the first thing you can see on the left is a Mirai from Toyota, a sports version of the Mirai and a Caetano hydrogen bus (partly owned by the Japanese manufacturer).
Racing cars made for competition
But what really catches the eye are the racing cars on display right in the middle of the village. One of these is the MissionH24, with copies also on display on the TotalEnergies and Michelin booths in the village. The other star is the Alpine Alpengow (a concept first unveiled at the Paris Motor Show), as well as a hydrogen-powered GT made by the GCK group (in partnership with Forvia, the Foenix H2). Another car made by Toyota will be unveiled on Friday morning. At the same time as the press conference on the future hydrogen category of the 24 Hours. And this Wednesday, the Ligier JS2 R H2, designed with Bosch Engineering, will take its place alongside the other cars.
A player in light mobility
Next up is a new player, Systemics.Energy. This start-up was created by Antoine Abou, an employee of Verso Energy. Its positioning is that of a low-power fuel cell. It is presented on a small single-seater of the Lotus Seven type, whose low weight guarantees sensations (2.8s to accelerate from 0 to 60 km/h). The company intends to meet the needs of tricycles and quadricycles.
A fun and animated presentation
There will be plenty of educational activities and games on hydrogen. The Automobile Club de l’Ouest was keen to present the subject in a fun way. This does not preclude a more corporate tent, ACO H2, with the support of France Hydrogène, where the Regiolis H2 train and other applications are discussed. Le Mans University and the Neopolia consortium will also be presenting their activities. But competition is never far away. A Pipo Moteurs engine is also on display.
As for Michelin, it is presenting its Watea business (supporting fleets in the energy transition), which is opening up to hydrogen. A Citroën H2 van is also on display at their booth.
Plastic Omnium is also at the H2 Village. The brand is displaying a tank as well as models representing competition, cars, trucks and trains.
The Hydrogen Village is open: Thursday 8 June from 10 a.m. to midnight, Friday 9 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday 10 from 9 a.m. to midnight and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Article written by Laurent Meillaud and translated by Logan King