Suzuki is quietly establishing itself as a leader in alternative fuel vehicles with the production of CNG-fueled cars and electric scooter concepts. Suzuki clearly hopes to continue this trend in 2011, and one of Suzuki's development partners – Intelligent Energy – reported yesterday that the company had received approval from the EU's governing bodies to begin sales of a hydrogen fuel-cell version of the company's award-winning Burgman maxi-scoot (first introduced as a concept vehicle in 2009).
With the electric powerplant supplying instant-on torque, the fuel-cell Suzuki should be one of the quickest ways to carve through modern-day traffic out there.
Full press release, below.
Intelligent Energy: Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter Obtains Whole Vehicle Type Approval
World's first WVTA certified fuel cell vehicle by Intelligent Energy and Suzuki
LOUGHBOROUGH, England – Intelligent Energy, the global clean power systems company, and Suzuki Motor Corporation, have today announced that the jointly developed Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter has obtained Whole Vehicle Type Approval (WVTA) – the first time any fuel cell vehicle has achieved this level of certification. WVTA qualifies the Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter design as safe to use on public roads without having to be inspected and tested individually, and brings zero emission motorcycles a step closer to becoming commercially available.
“Suzuki Motor Corporation is pleased to announce that the Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter has become the world's first fuel cell vehicle to earn Whole Vehicle Type Approval in the European Union”
First exhibited at the 41st Tokyo Motor Show in October 2009, the Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter, equipped with the latest version of Intelligent Energy's unique, air-cooled hydrogen fuel cell system, has been participating in a UK public road testing program run by Intelligent Energy and supported by the UK Government's Technology Strategy Board. The Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter design has now met with specified EU performance standards meaning that the vehicle and its components are approved for production and sale within Europe.
“Suzuki Motor Corporation is pleased to announce that the Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter has become the world's first fuel cell vehicle to earn Whole Vehicle Type Approval in the European Union,” explained Mr. O. Suzuki, Chairman and CEO, Suzuki Motor Corporation. “Our aim is to make eco-friendly fuel cell scooters increasingly common in Europe, in line with the establishment of hydrogen filling stations and other necessary infrastructure.”
The city-friendly Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter was jointly launched in Europe at London's City Hall in February 2010. At the event, the Chair of the London Hydrogen Partnership and London's Deputy Mayor for Policing, Kit Malthouse, hailed the zero emission scooter as a “fantastic piece of kit which shows how we can combat climate change.” A fleet of the scooters will now undergo a further test program in various public road conditions at sites in the East Midlands and London.
“We're immensely proud that our five year partnership with Suzuki Motor Corporation has led to the Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter becoming the world's first hydrogen fuel cell vehicle to achieve Whole Vehicle Type Approval. This is an important day in the history of fuel cell technology and a huge step towards cleaner, more efficient vehicles being part of the mainstream,” said Dr Henri Winand, CEO, Intelligent Energy.
Source: Suzuki/Intelligent Energy, via Engadget.