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SMILE FC: Suzuki and Intelligent Energy’s Partnership to Produce Fuel Cells

Suzuki SX4-FCV - Hydrogen Fuel Cell Concept Vehicle
Suzuki SX4-FCV – Hydrogen Fuel Cell Concept Vehicle

Suzuki and Intelligent Energy have come together to establish a new corporation, SMILE FC System Corporation, in order to mass-produce fuel cells for Suzuki vehicles.

With the ongoing development of hydrogen fuel cell concept vehicles, work is already underway to establish supporting infrastructure, including hydrogen generation, storage, and delivery systems. Of course, these concepts also need fuel cells, and for the most part, these concepts are using hand-made fuel cells, lab experiments, really.

So far, Suzuki has hydrogen fuel cell minivan, scooter, and motorcycle concepts, but none are in production. “The production line marks the successful transfer of proven semi-automated production technology, developed and utilised by Intelligent Energy.

The partnership, materialized through SMILE FC System Corporation, represents the next stage in high volume production of fuel cell systems with associated reduction of manufacturing and assembly costs as well as improved cycle times and enhanced product quality,” Intelligent Energy noted in a press release.

Some other manufacturers have set dates as early as 2015 for the release of a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, including Toyota & BMW and Daimler, Ford & Nissan. In this latest development, the partnership between Suzuki and Intelligent Energy, we see that there are more players lining up to make their offerings when the market opens. True, some are getting ready quieter than others, but at least the field looks to be diversifying.

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