French show world’s first racing bike on hydrogen

French technical study bureau H2 Motronics has developed a fuel cell racing motorbike on hydrogen, which they claim is a world first. The H2K, short for ‘H2 Kompact’, was shown at the Hyvolution exhibit in Paris and is meant as a live demonstrator for the bureau’s technical and innovative project management skills rather than for actual racing.

It’s powered by a 68 kW fuel cell developed by EKPO, the joint venture between German ElringKlinger and French automotive supplier Plastic Omnium, giving the bike an autonomy of 45 km and 100 kW of power. That’s approximately 18 minutes in actual racing conditions at speeds between 230 and 240 km/hour. The latter was tested on a circuit in Valencia, Spain.

Two hydrogen tanks

The hydrogen (up to 1,5 kg) is stored in two aluminum 18-liters cylinders at a pressure of 350 bar, delivered by Californian specialist Luxfer. The developers would prefer one cylinder at 700 bar, but this turned out to be not feasible within the technical restraints of the project.

Underneath the sleek racing outfit, they also had to fit a compressor, pumps for the two cooling circuits, and four battery packs of  800 Wh each, developed in-house. They are positioned at the front and rear to distribute weight evenly, a weight that was kept under 225 kg.

According to the developers, the H2K proved to be 20% lighter and adds 50% more range than possible with a battery-electric bike delivering the same performance, around 100 kW.

Roots in motorsports

H2 Motronics in Nevers, France, is the daughter of the Texys group, a specialist in designing, developing, and manufacturing sensors for complex applications with roots in motorsport. Texys was founded by Etienne Deméocq, former Head of Electronics for the Ligier Formula 1 team and then Prost Grand Prix.

The ‘crazy idea’ to develop the world’s first racing bike on hydrogen came from discussions between Philippe Leuwers, CEO of Texys Group, and Michel Augizeau, former pilot, founder, and CEO of TECMAS, ‘s official racing team since 2017.




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