Every hero has an extraordinary story - this is that of Peter Kuhn, a hydrogen business developer at Stellantis, who has been working in hydrogen since 2022.
I started my career 26 years ago at OPEL as a Transformation Engineer for utility vehicles.To begin with I wasn’t working with hydrogen, but with electric, to organise the commercial launch of electric utility vehicles in Germany. I then moved onto hydrogen technology and we discovered that it is a completely different story. My role today is to promote hydrogen and above all to accompany the creation of hydrogen ecosystems in Europe.
This is a technology which is powerful and at the same time silent and calm when you drive.I am really fascinated by the water cycle that it creates. It is a natural and clean element that is available everywhere (in the reasonable quantities which we need) and that we discharge at the end of the process. Of course, for this to really make sense, the hydrogen used must be produced using renewable resources.
The hydrogen project really means starting from zero with different game rules. Everything has to be reinvented, challenged and adapted. It is what we have been working on internally for several years and we are very far ahead, but we must now support this work externally – infrastructure must be developed, customer attitudes need changing... You need to believe in it and persuade and drive people!Thermal combustion engine models will be stopped in a few years, in 2028 at Opel, for example. Everyone knows it; now we must act.
Stellantis is the first manufacturer to make series production hydrogen utility vehicles in Europe and it started production in 2022. In 2024, we will start producing at the Hordain plant, where we today produce combustion engine (diesel) and electric (battery) vans.
I would bring everyone in line – the filling stations, vehicle manufacturers and green hydrogen producers – so that hydrogen becomes the norm.That would also significantly bring prices down so that more people could switch to this energy.
MacGyver. He’s smart and he always finds the right technical solution to things!