Grosvenor Leasing’s client, Green Tomato Cars, has joined an initiative which it is hoped will help accelerate the commercialisation of hydrogen as a zero-emission fuel for Europe’s cities.
Called the Zero Emission Fleet vehicles for European Roll-out (ZEFER) project, this €26 million (£22.8m) pan-European initiative will introduce 180 fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) into a combination of taxi, private-hire and police fleets in London, Paris and Brussels.
FCEVs run on hydrogen gas as a fuel. A fuel cell transforms the hydrogen directly into electricity to power the vehicle and produces no emissions other than water.
Having been impressed with the its first two hydrogen-powered Toyota Mirai cars under the scheme, Green Tomato Cars, London’s lowest emission private hire company, has ordered another fifty.
The new cars are being supplied with support from the UK’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles Hydrogen for Transport programme and the Zero Emission Fleet vehicles for European Roll-out programme, funded throughout Europe by the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking.
Jonny Goldstone, managing director and co-founder of Green Tomato Cars commented, “We’re very proud to have pioneered hydrogen-powered transport in London and are delighted with the performance of our two original Toyota Mirai.
“This is a unique project where investors in hydrogen technology, manufacturers of hydrogen cars and Green Tomato Cars as the end users, have come together with a commitment to make hydrogen transport work for the good of people and the environment.”
Each Toyota Mirai on the Green Tomato Cars fleet is expected to average around 120-150 miles a day. The Mirai can travel up to 300 zero-emission miles on a full tank of hydrogen, so the private hire cars should be refuelled every two days on average.
Shaun Barritt, group CEO of Grosvenor Leasing, who provide contract hire to 400 of Green Tomato Cars’ vehicles, added, “It’s clear that there is real momentum in the drive towards ultra low and zero emission vehicles.
“We are delighted to have Green Tomato Cars as a valued customer, as they are one of the UK’s leading pioneers in this field.”