As an engineer, Eric Chantriaux decided at the age of 30 to give up his executive position in a large French industrial group to devote himself to a passion practiced until then as an amateur: motor racing. Noticed by Citroën for his performance at the wheel of his four-wheel drive Visa 1000 Pistes, the young entrepreneur was quickly entrusted with the construction and official commitment of the manufacturer’s cars in rallies. At the same time, Solution F begins its diversification by manufacturing its own single-seater (a Formula Renault) and demonstrates a particular ability in the development of engines such as the TU2-4 and XU9J4 which equip the 205 and 309 marketed by Peugeot Sport for competition. .
If Solution F then opens up to other fields of activity than car racing, this primary vocation will remain the red thread of its history. Even today, sports programs such as the Foenix H2 remain an extraordinary source of innovation and motivation for all the teams.
The move into new site of 2,000 m² is accompanied by the acquisition of more efficient equipment, particularly in the field of engines with the commissioning of two test benches. These new infrastructures attract major car manufacturers such as Renault, which entrusts Solution F with the execution and analysis of a test program (chassis and engine) for the new Laguna V6, or SsangYong, which commissions the company to adapt its system, from engine management to special applications.
The structure is also entrusted with very specific projects, such as the production of light assault vehicles (VLA) and rapid intervention vehicles (VRI) for the Ministry of Defence. Finally, a new “high performance suspension” department was created to manufacture shock absorbers for cars, motorcycles and trucks.
Entered in the Guinness Book with the first electric helicopter in 2011, Solution F really operated its diversification towards aeronautics in 2013 with the development of an electric propulsion for the E-Fan, an aircraft which will cross the Channel in 2015. This project marks the beginning of a long collaboration with Airbus from which the technical teams acquired rare expertise in the field of helicopter transmission boxes.
This new know-how would attract other players in the sector, such as Thales, for which Solution F is developing an electric propulsion concept intended to move the Stratobus, a balloon assigned to telecommunications and observation missions at 20 km altitude. Later, it was the turn of the start-up VoltAero to call on the skills of Solution F to design a small hybrid plane combining electric and internal combustion engines.
In 2019, Total Energies entrusted Solution F with the design and operation of a mobile hydrogen refueling station for the Mission H24 prototype. Led by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), this development program should lead to the future creation of a hydrogen category at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. This expertise acquired in the handling and storage of hydrogen takes on its full meaning in the summer of 2022 with the takeover of Solution F by the GCK group.
At the same time, the company is entrusted with the study and manufacture of electric motors capable of propelling all the vehicles offered in the GCK Mobility catalog (utilities, coaches, trucks, boats, snow groomers).
The Solution F design office also takes care of complete projects from simulation and design to detailed studies, both in the field of engines and for chassis or general mechanical projects.
“It’s an exceptional opportunity for a young group like GCK to be able to rely on the technical maturity of a company like Solution F. The experience acquired by Venelles technicians and engineers over nearly 40 years in the engine sector represents a major asset in the pursuit of our ambitions and in the deployment of our hydrogen strategy. For its part, the GCK group provides Solution F with privileged access to cutting-edge technologies such as lithium-ion batteries from GCK Battery. It’s a win-win! »
Managing Director of Solution F