Watèa by Michelin, the e-mobility service provider, is broadening its portfolio to incorporate hydrogen vehicles for commercial fleets. Launched in 2021, the corporate startup initially focused on providing fleet solutions for battery-electric vehicles.
Michelin established Watèa two and a half years ago, offering turnkey electrification solutions for fleet customers. Operating on a subscription model, the service provides electric vehicles along with a comprehensive ecosystem. Targeting customers transitioning to electric cars or light commercial vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes, Watèa guarantees an all-inclusive monthly subscription covering hydrogen vehicles, charging solutions, maintenance, 24-hour assistance, and digital services.
The expansion into commercial hydrogen mobility aligns with Watèa's 2021 plan, with the subscription offering access to various subsidy programs, including those from ADEME (the French Environment and Energy Agency) and the French region of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes.
France, actively promoting hydrogen transport, finds support from Michelin, a key player in the sector. The move reinforces the increasing role of hydrogen in fleet electrification. Watèa believes that the new service will enhance fleet availability, considering hydrogen vehicles' similarities to combustion engine vehicles.
While Watèa expands into hydrogen mobility, its existing service for battery-powered electric vehicles will continue and undergo further expansion. Pascal Nouvellon, CEO and President of Watèa, underscores the importance of offering the best in electrical technology for decarbonizing commercial vehicle fleets. Nouvellon sees hydrogen mobility as increasingly vital, citing greater autonomy and significantly reduced charging times compared to battery vehicles.
Michelin, a tire specialist, has been actively aligning its business with e-mobility trends, introducing electric vehicle-optimized summer tires in 2020 and collaborating with Hyundai on tire solutions in 2022.