Forvia-Michelin-Stellantis JV inaugurates its first gigafactory

With its capacity for innovation and industrialisation, and an annual output of 50,000 fuel cell systems, Symbio’s SymphonHy is paving the way for large-scale production, supporting automakers in their drive for low-carbon transport.

Autocar Pro News Desk By Autocar Pro News Desk calendar 06 Dec 2023 Views icon2314 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
SymphonHy is the largest integrated fuel cell production site in Europe.

Symbio, an equally owned joint venture between Forvia, Michelin and Stellantis, inaugurated SymphonHy on December 5, its first gigafactory, a centre of technological and industrial excellence.

Located in Saint-Fons, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of France, SymphonHy is the largest integrated fuel cell production site in Europe.

The site houses the Group’s headquarters, a production plant, an innovation hub, and the Symbio Hydrogen Academy. With its state-of-the-art technology, SymphonHy has a high level of automation and robotics supporting large-scale industrial production at a more competitive cost. These developments are key to accelerate the roll-out of competitive, high-performance hydrogen-powered transport, and contribute to the energy transition and the ambitions of Europe to move towards net zero.

SymphonHy in figures:
- A current production capacity of 16,000, to reach 50,000 by 2026
- An existing surface area of 26,000 square metres, 40,000 square metres by 2026
- 7,000 square metres of space dedicated to innovation

- 8,000 square metres of ISO 8-certified cleanrooms
- More than 450 engineers, including 100 dedicated to innovation and around 20 PhDs covering a wide range of disciplines (electrochemical engineering, chemistry, materials science, etc.), brought together in a single world-class innovation centre.

Making zero-emission hydrogen mobility an affordable reality

With more than 30 years of experience, leaders in the automotive world, and with six million kilometres of road-testing already on the clock, Symbio has developed unique expertise. The Group offers a broad portfolio of solutions that meet all power, durability and autonomy requirements for an efficient zero-emission mobility, from on-road light and mid-range commercial vehicles, trucks, pickups, buses and coaches, to off-road lifting and mechanical handling equipment.

With SymphonHy, Symbio is able to support its customers, pioneers of hydrogen-powered transport, in their deployment plans, which are already showing promise now, in the real world.

Stellantis, which is a Symbio co-shareholder, was the first company to market a zero-emission hydrogen solution for light commercial vehicles for the Peugeot e-Expert, Citroën e-Jumpy and Opel Vivaro-e models. The company is expanding its range to include large vans with a mid-power architecture, a range of up to 500km and a recharge time of less than 10 minutes. Stellantis has confirmed its plans to develop a hydrogen technology for its Ram brand pickups, in line with its aim of electrifying its portfolio of vehicles with a range of 320 miles ALVW or 200 miles GCWR and fast tank refilling, without compromising on payload capacity. All these vehicles will be equipped with fuel cells produced by Symbio.

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