Home Business Prinoth upgrades the hydrogen snow groomer and begins series production

Prinoth upgrades the hydrogen snow groomer and begins series production

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Prinoth upgrades the hydrogen snow groomer and begins series production

Prinoth celebrates sixty years since the invention of the snow groomer and starts the series production of the Leitwolf h2Motion, a hydrogen-powered snow groomer. “In an extremely difficult economic moment, such as the one dictated by the pandemic in December 2020 – says Klaus Tonhäuser, president of Prinoth (HTI Group) – we wanted to keep our focus on two pillars of our company: our collaborators and our investments in research. and development oriented towards a preparation of the slopes always attentive to the natural ecosystem ». On that occasion, «the electric Husky eMotion, which this year entered the market with a series production, and the Leitwolf h2Motion, the world’s first hydrogen-powered snow groomer in the world – continues Tonhäuser – were presented. And now, just in time for the 60th anniversary, Prinoth is launching a second version of the innovative snow groomer. If the 2020 prototype worked with a hydrogen fuel cell, the new variant instead has a hydrogen combustion engine developed by Fpt Industrial, which makes it once again the first snow groomer of its kind in the world ».

From the first snowmobile to the hydrogen snow groomer

Photogallery18 pictures



It was Ernst Prinoth, former Formula 1 driver, who created the first snow groomer the P60 in his mechanical workshop in Ortisei in 1962, which started the era of modern alpine skiing. At that time the fresh snow was still trampled, or literally “beaten” by people, to be able to ski as long as possible. Depending on the size of the track, ten, twenty or hundreds of people were needed. Without this activity, however, the snow disappeared after a few days, accumulating at the edges of the slopes following the descents of the skiers. The actual slope became rocky and even the simplest descents became a source of danger and accidents were the order of the day. Ernst Prinoth, a passionate skier, began to think of a mechanical vehicle to work the slopes, a vehicle with low weight and high performance. In the project he poured the know-how gained behind the wheel of racing cars, creating in 1962 the first prototype of a snowcat that prepared the tracks. Success came in 1965 when Ernst Prinoth prepared the slopes for the World Ski Championships in Seefeld, Tyrol, with his first mass-produced snow groomer, the P15. Within hours, a small fleet of snow groomers completed a task that previously would have involved hundreds of people over many days of work. It was a success, the former pilot immediately received countless orders and the Gardena workshop soon turned into a small multinational. Since 2000 it has been part of the High Technology Industries (HTI) group Prinoth has 900 employees worldwide and four production sites: in Vipiteno for snow groomers, Granby in Canada for tracked vehicles and snow groomers, Herdwangen in Germany and St. Peter in the USA for vegetation management vehicles while the network of sales and service partners is active in over 80 countries.

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