Policies and Deployment for Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles : An Assessment of the Normandy Project

With Julien Brunet, June 2016.
Submitted to The International Journal of Hydrogen Energy

The paper provides a cost benefit analysis of one of the most prominent deployment project in France of fuel cell electric vehicles, taking place in Normandy. The project builds on the substitution of a diesel Renault Kangoo by an electric Renault Kangoo ZE with a fuel cell range extender for public fleets. The analysis points out potential weaknesses of the project as it is envisioned today using a decomposition of the value-chain. To achieve sustainability in 2025 a much stronger deployment should take place. This would allow for a sharp decrease in the total cost of ownership thanks to a close coordination between hydrogen production and its delivery through refilling stations to take advantage of the expected increasing volume of hydrogen consumption along the deployment path. This suggests that a high level in public funds at this early deployment phase can be critical for the success of the project.