Agricultural or construction machinery, airport equipment, and more generally all vehicles referred to as “off-road” are perfect candidates for retrofitting. Because they do not travel on the road, these vehicles are not bound by the same rules as others. In their case, approval is replaced by self-certification by the manufacturer, a less restrictive process.
In January 2022, the resort of Alpe d’Huez placed an order with GCK Mobility for five snow groomers. This Kâssbohrer Pistenbully model retains all its functional features and can be used without any weather restrictions. The groomer can travel on steep slopes and reach a maximum speed of 23 km/h, with a range of 8 hours. The weight is maintained both when empty and in use (8.9 t and 13.2 t respectively). It is equipped with a fuel cell – designed by GCK in collaboration with FEV – which is among the most powerful on the market.
Construction and quarrying equipment are particularly suitable for retrofitting their internal combustion engines with hydrogen. With this solution, the entire engine is not changed, but only a few parts (fuel system, spark plug). The overall cost of ownership (cumulative cost of the vehicle over its life cycle) is lower with this conversion than with a hybrid electric-hydrogen (fuel cell) system.