Hopium, a French car company, plans to launch the world first luxury car powered by hydrogen. The company disclosed the brand- Hopium Machina; and is expected to produce the prototype by June 2021.
The company plans to start mass production by 2026 in France, with $1 billion turnover target by 2030. Hopium Machina brand’s commercialisation would follow in all major markets, including Europe, China, South Korea, Japan, and the US.
The company claims that besides being carbon neutral, the 500-hp would run for 1,000 km from a single tank and recharge under three minutes. Hopium Machina would also combine connectivity, safety and ergonomics with sporty interior design. The company has not disclosed the price tag, but it is likely to be over US$ 100,000.
It also has a futuristic look, but it does not look like a fully autonomous vehicle from its overall layout. The full autonomous technology (level 5) is likely to be commercialised after 2026.
“Developing a design or even a prototype is so much easy nowadays, especially because of 3D technology. With a small investment, any auto enthusiastic can materialise an imaginary car. The key part is the commercialisation of your imaginative car.” a major luxury car dealer told H2 Bulletin.
The person behind the brand is Olivier Lombard, a French racing driver. He is the founder of Hydrogen Motive Company group (HMC), the parent company of Hopium. In 2011, Olivier became the youngest ever driver to win the 24 hour Le Mans race.
Most people probably have not heard Hopium before. Many things may happen between now and 2026 when the production is claimed to be started. It may be possible that another carmaker claims the title of making the first hydrogen-powered luxury car. However, one thing is sure that Hopium has already started the race.