Fiat Panda Hydrogen Concept
Fiat has certainly taken the time to look toward the future and the proof is in the Panda. The 2006 Fiat Panda Hydrogen Concept Car features Nuvera’s new Andromeda II fuel cell stack. This hydrogen fuel cell allows the vehicle to have high power density and durability, as well as cold start capability.
Fiat Panda Hydrogen Concept Car
When Nuvera Fuel Cells Inc., a high-tech developer out of Massachusetts and Italy, developed the Andromeda II, Fiat acknowledged the opportunity to have the first vehicle with this advancement.
The Fiat Panda Hydrogen Car’s system has three main fuel cell components including an advanced turbo-blower, a cooling and humidifying system to correctly manage the reagent gases, and the auxiliary components set. This system allows the vehicle to function at a higher power and it allows for smooth handling.
The fuel cell and hydrogen tank in the Fiat Panda Hydrogen Car are located beneath the floor pan unlike the 2004 version of the Panda Hydrogen Car where the fuel cell stack was located underneath the hood.
In the 2006 model, the transmission and alternating current three-phase asynchronous electric engine (60 kw) is still located underneath the hood. Fiat also states that the electrical power generation system is so efficient that 60-percent is available and just 20-percent maximum power.
The 2006 Fiat Panda Hydrogen Car uses a full power system, which means it lacks a drive battery for the accumulation of electrical energy. The Panda Concept receives enough energy directly from hydrogen tank to fuel cell to deliver the needed electricity to its high-torque electrical motors. This is a change from the 2004 Panda Hydrogen Concept, which used a hybrid system including a small electric battery pack to deliver more juice as needed and recover energy via regenerative braking.
Interior of Panda Concept
The 2006 Panda Concept can accelerate from 0 to 30 mph in 5 seconds and can reach a top speed of about 78 miles per hour. Unlike other low-powered hydrogen autos, the Fiat Panda Hydrogen Car can make it up a 23-degree slope on take-off. The Panda Hydrogen Car also boasts a travel distance of more than 120 miles and refueling time less than 5 minutes.
The Fiat Panda Hydrogen Car indicates Fiat’s advancement in pushing the research forward from the laboratory stage to the prototype research vehicle. The 2006 Fiat Panda Hydrogen Car was shown off in February of 2006 at the first ever Hydrogen Olympics in Turin, Italy, which coincided with the 2006 Winter Olympics in the same city. The Panda Hydrogen Concept is the result of a joint venture between the Fiat Research Centre, Fiat Auto and Fiat Powertrain Research & Technology division.
Expect to see some 2006 Panda Hydrogen Concept Vehicles start to rollout as test fleet vehicles around Italy and the rest of the European Union at the end of 2006.
In 2010 the Fiat Panda Concept was upgraded. Quallion now provides the lithium ion batteries (using its Matrix and HAM technologies) for the Fiat Panda to improve both energy storage and safety. The fuel cell has also been upgrade with a new stack designed by Nuvera.